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Jharkhand to demand special package from 14th Finance Commission

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Team of Finance Commission arrives, to hold meeting today

Ranchi: Jharkhand government has prepared a proposal for demanding special package from the 14th Finance Commission for the development of basic infrastructure.

Chief Minister Hemant Soren said there was a crisis of basic amenities and infrastructure in the state. He said the proposal for demanding a special economic package for the state was prepared on reasonable grounds keeping in mind the geographical and social status of the state.

“The state is grappling with the problem of extremism. Also, it takes us a lot of time in getting clearance for the various development projects since it is a state of many forested areas. Due to this, the project cost goes up manifold,” the CM observed.

The proposal was prepared in the wake of the arrival of the team of the 14th Finance Commission in the state Capital. The team arrived here on Wednesday on a three day visit. It is being led by Dr YV Reddy, chairman of the Commission. It will hold a meeting with the state government representatives including the CM at Hotel BNR Chanakya tomorrow.

Other members of the team include joint secretary VS Senthil, Mukhmit Singh Bhatia, economic advisor Pinaki Chakravaraty, director Deepak Narayan, Ashutosh Joshi, deputy director Shailendra Kumar, assistant director Ritesh Kumar and Yadavendra Singh.

The team was welcomed by the state finance minister Rajendra Prasad Singh and Chief Secretary of Jharkhand RS Sharma at the Birsa Munda Airport. Speaking to scribes at the airport, Rajendra Prasad Singh said the proposal contained proposal for special package for the development of basic infrastructure in almost all the important sectors including health, education, energy, water, road and Information Technology.

“The status and points of the proposal will be made clear by Thursday evening. We will be demanding a bigger package as compared to the package proposed to be given to Bihar,” said the minister.
Jharkhand Chief Secretary RS Sharma said the state was still lagging behind many other states in terms of basic infrastructure.

“Jharkhand is very far behind in the field of education, health and energy if we go by the national average. There will be required huge investment to bring the state at par with other states. Keeping this in mind, a proposal has been prepared to seek special package for the state. There are many other problems, of which, extremism and unemployment are prominent,” Sharma said.

The CM will be addressing the meeting with the Commission members tomorrow. A presentation will be given before the Commission. The Commission chairman will address a meeting after lunch following discussions with the government officials. The meeting will also be addressed by the Finance Secretary of the state AP Singh.

The team will visit Naro village in Nagari block to inspect farming of wheat and vegetables through micro irrigation project and dairy production in Gokul village. It will also hold a meeting with the representatives of commerce and industry of the state and later meet representatives of local administrative bodies. It will further meet representatives of various political parties and take their suggestions and opinion on various issues. After these meetings, the team will return to New Delhi for a final decision on the special package demand and its report on providing development assistance to the state.

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