Bhubaneswar: Mounting a scathing attack
on BJD government in Orissa, Congress on Friday accused it of
"misleading" people by alleging negligence by Centre to hide
its corruption, inefficiency and inability to spend 37 per
cent of the Central funds.
Dubbing Naveen Patnaik government as "non-performing"
despite burgeoning Central support, senior leaders including
state Congress chief K P Singhdeo, leader of opposition
Bhupinder Singh and MLA and PCC general secretary Naba Kishore
Das vowed to launch a campaign to expose its failure.
Stung by a series of scams including the dal scandal
affecting children and pregnant women, the BJD government has
been trying to divert public attention by blaming Centre for
everything but "we will make people aware," Singhdeo said.
"While 37 per cent of Central funds received by Orissa
for various programmes remained unspent, the state government
always alleges negligence by Centre," Naba Kishore Das told
reporters after a report "State of Central Support for
Development of Orissa" was released here.
Similarly, Orissa was given about 57 per cent of the
Central taxes raised from the state but there is always a
blame game and shifting responsibilities on the part of ruling
BJD putting the people in dilemma, Das claimed.
Accusing BJD government of often lying, the Congress
leaders said Revenue minister S N Patro, who yesterday claimed
in assembly that Centre was yet to sanction help for drought
and unseasonal rains, today admitted that funds had come.
Stating that the date used in the report were gathered
from secondary and published sources from Orissa government,
the PCC general secretary said the state is also very poor in
mobilising own revenue sources over years.
Despite high growth of 15 per cent during 2010-11,
half of population in the state are living below poverty line
amid low human development, gender disparity, bad quality of
development services and access of the poor, decline in
agriculture productivity and foodgrain production, he said.
Though Centre has contributed several people oriented
programmes like NREGS and right to education Act with ample
funds, non-transparent administration disturbs the life of
common man, he claimed.
In view of Orissa`s excessive dependence on central
transfers, the volatility of state`s own revenue created a big
fiscal crisis, Das said.
Slamming Orissa government for poor revenue
mobilisation, he said annual average growth rate of state`s
revenue during 2004-05 to 2009-10 was 14.07 per cent while
growth rate for Andhra Pradesh and Jharkhand stood at 21.83
per cent and 20.83 per cent respectively during the period.
Again, the contribution of own revenue receipt for
Orissa to the total revenue receipt is less than 50 per cent
whereas Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh contribute more than two
third over the years, he said.
Referring to share of state plan in total plan, the
MLA from Jharsuguda said the central plan and central
sponsored plan funds together show an increasing share over
the years which proves wrong the charge of central negligence.
During 2001-02 the share of state plan to total plan
was 84.5 per cent which in continued to decline to reach 77.5
per cent in 2010-11, he said.
On the other hand, Das and his party colleagues said,
the share of central plan and central sponsored plan together
was 15.5 per cent and has grown to 22.5 per cent.
The Congress leaders further attacked the BJD
government saying the utilisation of Central plan and Central
sponsored plan funds was very minimal compared to the
utilisation of state plans.
Stating that the present state of affairs of Orissa
was not conducive to development of poor people, they said the
distance between the administration as well as ruling party
and the common citizens had grown.
Such attitude of the government would lead to serious
crisis if appropriate steps are not taken to bring about
corrective measures, they said.