Nitish satisfied with plan assistance, to pursue special status



Patna: Expressing dissatisfaction over Rs 12,000 crore assistance likely to be allotted to Bihar during the 12th plan under Backward Region Grant Fund (BRGF), Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday said he would continue to strive for special status for the state.

"I am aware that a cabinet note has been prepared for approval by the Union Cabinet about making a provision for Rs 12,000 crore assistance to Bihar under BRGF during the 12th plan," he told reporters here.

"Although we had demanded Rs 20,000 crore assistance under BRGF under the 12th plan and submitted a host of schemes for implementation with these funds like setting up high schools in each panchayat, dedicated feeder for agriculture and irrigation and roads for all habitats with 250 people, I am dissatisfied with likely sanction of Rs 12,000 crore assistance," he said.

He clarified that the special assistance was not related to the special status demand, which he will continue to pursue.

The BRGF fund, though satisfactory, was not a 'favour' being doled out to the state as there is provision under Bihar State Reorganization Act for compensation for losses arising out of bifurcation and to provide additional fund to tide over backwardness. Accordingly the Centre had given Rs 1000 crore annual assistance for execution of various schemes, which were still to be completed, he said.

The chief minister said the Centre had unilaterally decided to withdraw two CRPF battalions from Bihar and would have no impact on security in the state. Alternative arrangement was being made like deployment of STF, armed police and other specialized units of Bihar police in its place.

PTI