Badal demands abolition of centrally-sponsored schemes
New Delhi: Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Thursday demanded abolition of centrally-sponsored schemes saying they do not serve the desired purpose and states should be given their earmarked allocation as un-tied grants.
Addressing a meeting of the National Development Council here, Badal said the centrally-sponsored schemes are formulated on an all-India basis without taking into account the unique problems of states, thus leaving little choice in prioritising its development plan.
"The state government is of the view that the centrally-sponsored schemes do not serve desired purpose and should be abolished and the state should be given their earmarked allocation as un-tied grants," Badal said.
He said states are in a better position to leverage their strengths and utilise the funds according to their development needs.
Badal also urged the Centre to pay special attention to farm indebtedness and waive all agricultural loans as one time measure regardless of the size of landholding.
"The state did not benefit much from the earlier debt waiver scheme which was limited to defaulters and small farmers," he said.
Seeking the Centre's help in the area of diversification of the farm sector, he said the state will not be able to achieve much in the area without the strong support of the government of India.
"We suggest that a mission for diversification of agriculture in green revolution areas on the lines of bringing green revolution to the eastern India must be started," he said, demanding earmarking a sum of Rs 5,000 crore for this during the 12th Plan.
Badal also urged the Centre to help the state in addressing various issues highlighted by him.
The outlay for 12th Five-year Plan for Punjab has been projected at Rs 92,000 crore, which is 127 per cent higher than the 11th Five-Year Plan.