Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami Saturday called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his residence here and sought his support for various state-specific projects.
Palaniswami, during the brief interaction, also presented him a memorandum on various development projects. Later, the chief minister took part in the fifth governing council meeting of NITI Aayog here.”The Tamil Nadu government, working on the lines of my revered leader Amma (former chief minister J Jayalalithaa), is pushing forward her vision of a developed Tamil Nadu and I request the prime minister to support us by providing sufficient funds (for the developmental schemes),” Palaniswami said in his address.
The schemes for which he sought financial assistance from the Centre included rejuvenation of water bodies in Tamil Nadu, setting up of rainwater harvesting structures, besides seeking linking of Godavari river in Andhra Pradesh with Cauvery river on a priority basis. Palaniswami sought Modi’s intervention in setting up a 400 million litres per day desalination plant at Perur (near Coimbatore) costing Rs 6,078 crore. He asked the Centre to provide a gap funding of Rs 1,810 crore.
The chief minister requested the prime minister to allot Rs 100 crore each to Ramanathapuram and Virudhunagar districts in order to overcome the shortfall in specific components like agriculture and skill development. Noting that states like Tamil Nadu face droughts frequently, Palaniswami requested him for special allocation of Rs 1,000 crore per annum towards water conservation.
On the proposed greenfield airport in Chennai, Palaniswami said his government had already announced the project and requested the Centre to extend support for its construction “with equal participation by Government of India”. He also requested Center to release pending IGST arrears of Rs 4,458 crore to the state. The chief minister also asked Modi to direct NITI Aayog to accord necessary approval and funding for the Chennai Integrated Flood Management System costing Rs 3,000 crore.
Palaniswami, during his brief visit here, also met Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari, Water Resources Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and discussed projects of the state with them. The issue of Mekedatu dam was among the subjects that came up for discussion with Shekhawat, a release said. The Tamil Nadu Assembly had in December adopted a resolution in December 2018 urging the Centre to withdraw the permission given to Karnataka for a detailed project report for its proposed dam across Cauvery river at Mekedatu in Karnataka.
“..Honble Chief Minister, Tamil Nadu called on (sic) for a courtesy meeting and to discuss water-related issues in the state, at Shram Shakti Bhawan, New Delhi,” Shekhawat said on Twitter. Palaniswami also called on Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman later.The office of Finance Minister in its official twitter handle shared a picture of Palaniswami meeting Sitharaman.
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