SHILLONG, July 10 (IANS): Governors and Chief Ministers of the northeastern states have expressed their disapproval of the Central government’s decision to put on hold new schemes funded through the North Eastern Council (NEC).
The Union Finance Ministry, through its Expenditure Finance Committee had last year decided to stop projects under Non-Lapsable Central Pool of Resources, following which the Union Cabinet gave its approval on March 28 this year to introduce a new scheme called “Northeast Special Infrastructure Development Schemes” in its place.
“All Governors and Chief Ministers have expressed their concern as to why last year’s sanctions for projects were stopped or kept in abeyance,” NEC Secretary Ram Muivah informed on the concluding day of the Council plenary meet here.
The plenary meeting, considered to be the highest decision making authority, chaired by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, who is also the ex-officio Chairman of NEC was attended by Governors and Chief Ministers of the northeastern states besides Union Development of North Eastern Region minister Jitendra Singh.
Chief Ministers Lal Thanhawla (Mizoram), Neiphiu Rio (Nagaland), Conrad K. Sangma (Meghalaya), and Pema Khandu (Arunachal Pradesh) had appealed to Rajnath Singh to review the decision to put on hold developmental projects sanctioned by the NEC to meet the development needs of the region.
Under the new scheme, the Centre, through the Ministry of DoNER, has assured to fund 100 per cent for projects, not like the earlier funding pattern of 90:10 - 90 per cent by the Centre and 10 per cent by the respective states.
However, the NEC members aren’t happy with NESID) on the ground that the Centre would earmarked only around Rs 1,600 crore, whereas for projects sanctioned under NLCPR on 90:10 funding, the total amount would come to almost Rs 40,000 crore.