North East SDG Conclave: CM raises demand for revision of fund sharing pattern for NE states

AGARTALA:

Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb on Monday demanded revision of existing 50:50 fund sharing pattern to 90:10 for various schemes like Smart City for the North Eastern states.

Deb also urged NITI Aayog’s support for pursuing central government to sanction more power and sufficient funds to North Eastern Council so that each state of the region can get proportionate share of required funding.

He also said that the NITI Aayog may also provide active support for simplification of sanctioning procedure for the projects taken up under externally aided project (EAP) by reducing the number of clearance required to be obtained from different Ministries in respect of projects taken up in the North Eastern states.

The Chief Minister was speaking at the North East SDG Conclave -2020 at Guwahati.

“State Government is focused to achieve double digit growth of economy of the State, and sustain the same in the long run, through concerted efforts to make the State a trading hub and gateway to NE states,” the Chief Minister said adding that, export promotion of items like bamboo, rubber, tea, fruits and nuts, value addition of exportable surplus items produced in the State like rubber, bamboo, etc, and augmentation of service sector like tourism, hospitality, health care through capacity building and high end skilling would be the key strategies for economic growth.

Addressing the conclave, the Chief Minister elaborated the 16 Sustainable Development Goals of his government to ensure overall growth of Tripura. Apart from speaking on state government’s initiatives to ensure quality education, strengthen healthcare and improve infrastructure sector, the Chief Minister also highlighted state government’s achievements in implementing various schemes like PMAY, MGNREGA, Ayushman Bharat, Ujjawala Yojana in Tripura.

“Tripura has successfully formulated its Vision 2030 along with 7 Year Strategy, 3 Year Action Plan and State Indicator Framework document highlighting key focus areas of current interventions after due localization. Our Government is committed to working with both internal and external stakeholders to promote sustainable and inclusive economic growth and social development along with environmental protection, to deliver long term benefits to the people, including women, children, youth and differently abled,” the Chief Minister said.

“Tripura generated significantly higher rural jobs under MGNREGA. Labour Budget of the State for 2019-20 has increased to 4.00 crore as compared to 3.00 crore during 2018-19. Total 2.92 crore persondays at 52.1 average persondays have already been generated this year as compared to 2.53 crore persondays at 46.07 average mandays during 2018-19 and 33.68 average persondays during 2017-18,” he said.

Under Prime Minister’s Awas Yojana – Gramin (PMAY-G), the cumulative target for financial year 2016-18 was 24,989 houses of which 24,291 (97.21 percent) houses have already been completed as on February 7 this year, he told the conclave.

A total of around 2,84,053 women from rural poor families have been mobilized into 29,059 Self Help Groups, 1171 Village Federation of SHGs and 20 Cluster Level Federation SHGs Under National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM), he said adding that the rates of social pensions had also been enhanced to Rs.1000 per month benefitting more than 4 lakh social pensioners of various vulnerable sections.

“For the first time in the history of Tripura, the FCI has started procuring paddy directly from farmers at Minimum Support Price (MSP) -- 10,405 MT paddy was purchased in 2018-19 from 5,501 farmers and 16,870 MT paddy in 2019-20 from 8,623 farmers at MSP of Rs 17.50 per kg resulting in financial return of Rs.48 crore to the farmers of Tripura. During 2019-20 another 30,000 MT paddy will be procured at a price of Rs. 18.15 per kg,” he said.

“Under Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi, as input support, Rs.138.03 crore has been transferred to 1,97,537 bank account of small and marginal farmers in the State out of 2,21,000 cases uploaded.

Under Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, to save the farmers from the vagaries of nature, 36,004 farmers have been insured so far during 2019-20 as compared to 11,782 during 2016-17, which is 206% more,” he added.

The Chief Minister also said, 20,56,000 people would be getting the benefit of Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana (PMJAY). Under Ayushman Bharat and as of now, 9,12,996 e-cards have been distributed in Tripura.

“The State Government has introduced a new Health Assurance Scheme – Ayushman Tripura aimed at covering 3,56,000 people among those left out of Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) and Priority Group (PG) families of the State which may fall under the deprivation criteria akin to those of AB-PMJAY beneficiaries, yet not covered under AB-PMJAY,” he added.

Addressing the conclave, the Chief Minister laid maximum stress on state government’s initiatives to ensure quality education. He explained all the initiatives taken by his government for ensuring quality education and strengthening the entire education system. He spoke on Natun Disha, Shiksha Darpan Mobile App, introduction of NCERT syllabus and centralized examination question papers, Mission 30:30 and amendment in detention policy.

Meanwhile, the Chief Minister conveyed his gratitude to vice chairman of NITI Aayog- Rajiv Kumar for his sincere efforts in terms of setting up of Special Economic zone at Sabroom.

In his speech, the Chief Minister also said, “Tripura has been acclaimed as the best performing State in the category of North Eastern States in India and second best performing State in overall country under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban). So far against the target 77,379 houses sanctioned, 32,078 houses have been completed and the remaining is at different stages of construction.”

Referring to Smriti Van, the Chief Minister said, “the State Government has launched a new initiative for raising of ‘Smriti Van’ which will serve to attract people for Tree planting in commemoration of the Purbajans as well as ensure the objective of plantation of seedlings for enhancing the tree and forest cover in the State. 

Various areas under Teliamura, Udaipur, West have been identified and in other various sub divisions the work is under progress. The Smriti Vans are expected to be ready for receiving planting activities in April, 2020.

Giving details on trade with Bangladesh, he said, “The trade volume with Bangladesh has increased from Rs. 390.68 crore in 2017-18 to Rs. 537.00 crore in 2018-19 and the export from Tripura has increased remarkably from Rs.6.46 crore in 2017-18 to Rs.14.66 crore in 2018-19.  Moreover, at the request of State Government, Bangladesh has removed port restriction on seven commodities, out of 27 restricted items. Recently, on 1st December 2019, another nine items have been allowed to be exported to Bangladesh through Land Custom Stations of Tripura.”