No discrimination against WB in fund allocation: Chidambaram
New Delhi: Centre on Saturday rejected West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's charges that step motherly treatment was being meted out to her state, saying there is no discrimination as central funds are allocated as per the recommendations of the Finance Commission.
"There is and there can be no step motherly attitude. Funds are given to states as per the Finance Commission recommendations.
No state is preferred, no state is discriminated against," Finance Minister P Chidambaram said when asked to comment on Mamata's charge, during the National Editors conference here.
He said in fact no government can change the formula for allocations of funds.
"So the charge of discrimination is wrong and I reject the charge," he said.
Trinamool Congress, which rules West Bengal, attacked Chidambaram saying "the Finance Minister is skirting the facts and playing political games instead".
Addressing the media at the National Editor's Conference here, Chidambaram said that in fact West Bengal is seeking a special assistance to deal with its debt burden.
"You must understand that this debt was incurred by the state because of borrowings in the past. Now that debt has to be financed by the state itself," the Minister said, adding, he has never favoured the idea of special packages for states.
The Mamata Banerjee government, which came to power in 2011, is facing a huge debt of about Rs 2 lakh crore and has been demanding special package in the form of interest moratorium.
Chidambaram further said besides West Bengal, some other states too are facing debt problems.
"Therefore, we have asked the 14th Finance Commission to look into the problems of debt stressed states and advise the government how to deal with it," he said.