Punjab for funds to states on SC population basis



New Delhi: Punjab on Saturday suggested that disbursement of funds to the states should be done on the basis of their Scheduled Caste population and contribution of foodgrains to the national pool by them.

In his speech at the National Development Council Meet here, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal suggested an amendment to the Gadgil/Mukherjee formula under which population, per capita income, performance and special problems are the four criteria used for disbursement of funds to the states.

"We request that these criteria need to be amended and should take into account the Scheduled Caste population in the state and performance in terms of contribution of foodgrains to the national pool in order to ensure food security," Badal said in his speech read out by his Finance Minister Upinderjit Kaur on his behalf at the NDC meet.

He insisted that the welfare of SCs should receive special attention as required in the Scheduled Caste sub-plan. He emphasised on increased food production as being equally important in view of rising food prices and hunger levels.

"The 60 per cent weightage of population (under the Gadgil/Mukherjee formula) should be split up into total population (40 per cent) and SC population (20 per cent)...

"....The weightage of 25 per cent for per capita income should be reduced to 15 per cent and the weightage of performance should be increased to 17.5 per cent with 10 per cent weightage to the contribution of foodgrains to the national pool," Badal said.

Punjab also rued that its share in central taxes had declined and sought a special package under the 12th Plan.

PTI