State to write to Centre seeking early clearance of Rs 630 crore
Kolkata: The Bengal government is going to write to the Centre this week seeking clearance of Rs 630 crore 50-year interest free loan, that will be spent entirely on new or ongoing capital projects, at the earliest.
Considering that the Centre is giving back the tax payers money that it collected from the state itself, the Bengal government has decided to go ahead in taking
"It is the tax payers' money that the Centre will be giving to the state government. So there is no question of not availing the same and a communiqué will be sent to the Centre in this regard by this week. If they give, they must give as early as possible. The reason being the fund has to get utilised by March 2021 and it will be just three months left in hand even if we get it by the end of December or the beginning of January," said an official.
It is around Rs 85,000 crore that the Centre at present owes to the state. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee repeatedly said that the Centre is not clearing the dues despite collecting taxes from the people of Bengal.
It was in October when the Centre had announced giving Rs 12,000 crore to states including Rs 630 crore to
Bengal as interest-free loan
for spending on capital projects.
According to another senior official of the state government, the state Finance department wrote to different departments to send lists of the ongoing projects for which the fund can be utilised.
Departments, those mainly carry out the infrastructure development programmes in the state, including the state Public Works Department (PWD), Urban Development and Municipal Affairs department, Water Resources and Investigation department and the state Irrigation and Waterways department were asked to submit names of ongoing projects that require more investment.
All departments had sent the same to the state Finance department that had scrutinised the list and finalised the projects for which the 50-year interest free loan will be sought.
Sources said that the senior officers of the state Finance department will be giving a final look into the list of work before sending the letter to the Centre in this regard by this week.
"Since the amount has to be spent by March 2021, it will be better as early as possible the Centre release the same.