Meghalaya seeks Rs 50,000 crore from Finance Commission

The Meghalaya government today sought Rs 50,000 crore from the 14th Finance Commission to meet non-plan expenditure and give a thrust to developmental projects in the state.

After a crucial meeting with the Finance Commission headed by former RBI Governor, Y V Reddy, Chief Minister Mukul Sangma said his government has asked Rs 50,000 crore as an award from the commission to meet the state’s committed expenditure and carry forward development activities.

"We have asked for an overall award of Rs 50,000 crore which includes a pre-devolution of Rs 35,000 crore to cover the basic needs of the state including the upgradation of infrastructure and cover the non-plan expenses which will enable the state to complete various other projects which have been delayed due to cost and time over run," Mukul Sangma told reporters.

One of the major expenses is the improvement of infrastructure in view of the creation of four additional district last year and upgradation of roads apart from the cost involved in the state normalization of 11,000 government posts which cost the state exchequer Rs 1987 crore.

Among the other expenses which will be covered under the finance commission were the state initiated specific programs like the creation of the state disaster mitigation and management authority, the state disaster management force, the Chief Minister said.

The other would be those which were committed by the government such as the implementation of the national food security scheme, the state’s liabilities in the pension scheme, establishment of courts and the commitment under the education sector and implementation of the pay commission recommendation he said.

Maintenance of roads and other infrastructure and creating infrastructure for the newly created four districts and the flagship programme of the state – the Integrated Basin Development and Livelihood Programme – required funds from the Commission, Mukul said.

During the two-day visit to Meghalaya, the Commission will also meet the Chief Executive Members (CEMs) of the three Autonomous District Councils (ADCs) in the state and the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of Municipal Boards and leaders of the various political parties.

The Commission which was set up in January this year is expected to submit its report by October next year. The period for which the Commission will recommend share of states in the Central taxes will be from April 1, 2015 to March 31, 2020.