Home BIG STORY Naveen demands ‘Special Category Status’ for Odisha, again

Naveen demands ‘Special Category Status’ for Odisha, again


Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Jan 9:

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, in a meeting with Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Arvind Panagariya at the Secretariat, today demanded that the state be accorded ‘Special Category Status’.

Naveen arvind Panagariya

“Odisha’s contribution to the process of nation building in terms of use of its natural resources is significant. Demands have been raised by the State Government several times in the past before the Government of India for declaring Odisha as a Special Category State, which has not yet been favourably considered. All the criteria for Special Category State are fulfilled by Odisha state except international boundaries. A special dispensation should be made in case of Odisha in this regard,” he said as per a press release issued by his office after the meeting.

To support his argument, he cited that there has been increase in devolution of central taxes from 32% to 42% for Odisha, there would be a net loss in central fund flow to the tune of Rs.1776.31 crore during 2015-16.

“Delinking area development programmes like special plan for KBK Districts, Backward Region Grant Fund (BRGF) and Integrated Action Plan (IAP) for LWE affected districts from central assistance will seriously affect the development programmes in the backward and LWE affected districts of the state. Support for development of the backward areas may be restored,” he added.

He also suggested that the Niti Aayog has been formed with the objective of empowering the states as equal partners in the national development on the principles of cooperative federalism. There is a need to put in place mechanisms and operational guidelines to jointly pursue the national and sub-national development agenda and that calls for formulation of a strategic plan for the entire country by the NITI Aayog and similar exercise at the state and district levels.