Meghalaya CM to press Centre on 90:10 funding pattern

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Shillong, March 23 (IANS) Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma on Friday said the government will take up with the Centre the issue of funding pattern of 90:10 for centrally-sponsored schemes being implemented in the state.

“We will keep pressing the Centre on this issue… funding for some centrally-sponsored schemes is not in the ratio of 90:10 especially after the devolution of fund was implemented under the 14th Finance Commission,” Sangma told journalists after he presented a fiscal deficit budget of Rs 1,150 crore.

Asked what is the financial package the state has sought from the Centre during his meeting with Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in New Delhi on Thursday, the Chief Minister said that the matter was still confidential.

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“We tried to give the picture of what challenges we are facing in the state and we received positive response from the Centre. They have to make their own calculations. However, we are hoping that the Centre will consider the state’s request,” he said.

Emphasising the need to increase the state’s own revenue while also trying to get external projects and centrally sponsored schemes, Sangma who also holds the finance portfolio said: “The financial situation in the state is tough.”

“There are many challenges that we are facing. It is not easy for any government and it will not be easy for our government too. But we are working hard and hope that the Centre will also supports us,” he said.

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Moreover, he admitted that the implementation of the pay revision under the fifth Meghalaya Pay Commission recommendations was also a huge burden.

To a query that various programmes initiated by the previous Congress government being reflected in his budget speech, Sangma said: “The government is a process, be it good or bad.

“I cannot disconnect myself from what has been happening in the past. These are policies and frameworks that have been created. I think as a responsible government, whether good or bad, it is our responsibility to ensure that the process continues.”

–IANS

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