Shimlaशिमला   No. 387/2024-PUB 24th June 2024

CM urges Finance Commission to recommend liberal financial assistance to Himachal Pradesh

CM urges Finance Commission to recommend liberal financial assistance to Himachal Pradesh

                            The state government gave a detailed presentation on the financial needs and various important issues pertaining to the state to the 16th Finance Commission here today which is on a three-day visit to Himachal Pradesh to give its recommendations for the next five years.

While raising various issues of the state’s interest Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu urged the Finance Commission to provide liberal financial assistance to the state for its contributions to the nation. He emphasized that it was necessary to develop the border areas of the state to ensure national security and provide basic facilities to the people of the border areas to check their exodus.  

He said that the state was prone to natural disaster and it should be given special preference post disaster management and relief and the disaster risk index should be made on the basis of possible disasters in Himachal Pradesh and all other Himalaya region states. He also informed the Commission that the government of India has yet not released Rs. 9042 crore to the state for huge losses due to heavy rains and flash floods during monsoon in the last year.

The Chief Minister said that the state had been contributing immensely in maintaining the green cover of the Himalaya region due to which the State was suffering revenue losses to the tune of thousands of crores which had never been compensated. In the larger interest of the country, the state government had imposed a complete ban on the felling of trees despite the fact that it could earn revenue of thousands of crores by cutting trees. Moreover, the state was also not being granted permission under FCA since 2017.

He said that Himachal Pradesh had been giving significant role not only in safeguarding the borders but also in development of the nation. The state has provided lakh of acres of fertile land for major projects like Bhakra dam, Pong dam and also provided water for irrigation purposes to Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan states besides power for various industries. But the state has not been getting any financial assistance for this nor has the Shanan power project been handed over to the state besides completion of the lease period.

Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said that the state government has taken various big decisions to improve the economy of the state like closing hundreds of non-functional and non-viable institutions and the efforts were on to make Himachal a green energy state. The revolutionary steps had been initiated to strengthen the rural economy by laying special focus on agriculture, animal husbandry and horticulture sectors.

The Chief Minister urged the 16th Finance Commission to recommend liberal financial assistance for the development of the state keeping in view the tough geographical conditions, the state's contribution to the nation.

Earlier, the Chairman of the 16th Finance Commission Dr. Arvind Panagariya in his opening remarks lauded the achievements of the state especially in the education and health sectors.

Deputy Chief Minister Mukesh Agnihotri, Agriculture Minister Chander Kumar, Industries Minister Harshwardhan Chauhan, Education Minister Rohit Thakur, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Anirudh Singh, PWD Minister Vikramaditya Singh, Town and Country Planning Minister Rajesh Dharmani and Ayush Minister Yadvinder Goma also gave their valuable suggestions during the meeting.

Principal Secretary (Finance) Devesh Kumar gave a detailed presentation to the Finance Commission.

Members of the Finance Commission Ajay Narayan Jha, Annie George Mathew, Dr. Niranjan Rajadhyaksha, Dr. Soumya Kanti Ghosh, Secretary Ritvik Panda, Chief Secretary Prabodh Saxena, Secretary Education Rakesh Kanwar and other senior officers of the state government were present on this occasion.


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