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Khekiho asks for more Central aid to Nagaland
Published on 16 Jul. 2009 12:25 AM IST
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While taking note of the current economic growth of the country projected at 6.7%, the lone Nagaland Rajya Sabha MP Khekiho Zhimomi however has lamented that no special programme found mentioned in the current Budget proposals was aimed at improving the regional economic imbalances in the north eastern region, particularly for Nagaland. Speaking in the Rajya Sabha during the discussion, the MP pointed out that it was imperative that a five-year road map was drawn up to meet the fiscal deficit of Nagaland. Highlighting that whatever funds provided from the central pool was utilized to meet the monthly outflow on account of salary, pension and also for meeting the expenditure on debt liability, Khekiho stated these were all of unproductive nature as hardly any development activity was possible and sustenance of growth remained a distant dream. Taking note of these hiccups, he put forward the proposal to draw up a blue print for sustained economic growth of the NE region, particularly Nagaland. The MP observed that one way of putting Nagaland into a better was to restore the pattern of financing assistance prevalent prior to 1987. He said the inflow of assistance prior to 1987 was more liberal as the region could meet the economic challenges in a better way. Also, highlighting that annual plan size of Rs.1500 crores to the state was too meagre and insufficient to meet economic challenges of the region, the MP said the amount was too little when considered against the enormity of agriculture, economic and other development needs of the state. With regard to this, the lone Rajya Sabha MP has appealed to both prime minister and finance minister to have little more sympathy and consideration for Nagaland and put efforts to restore the financing assistance patter. Apprising of certain positive initiatives and proactive measures taken by Nagaland chief minister involving political parties and 13th finance commission, that had recently visited the state, the MP has urged upon the prime minister, finance minister, planning commission, 13th finance commission, members of Rajya Sabha and its chairman to support his plea for greater financial assistance to Nagaland for meeting its developmental needs. He further asserted that additional central assistance was necessary for meeting the expenditure required to implement the recommendation of the Sixth Central Pay Commission for the state employees. The MP has also appealed for special economic package of Rs.1000 crores for the economic uplift of the people of Nagaland. Also, informing about the revival package of Nagaland Pulp and Paper Cooperation – Tuli Paper Mill – which had been under the consideration of the government of India, the MP demanded central government to make all out efforts and draw up a plan for the time-bound the revival of Nagaland Pulp and Paper Cooperation.

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