New Delhi/Chandigarh – Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday sought the intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the settlement of Rs.31,000 crore of food account on the procurement of wheat and paddy, which was wrongly taken over by the erstwhile state government instead of being adjusted between the state and the Central governments. The Chief Minister raised the issue with the Prime Minister during a meeting here.“The Rs 31,000 crore included Rs 12,000 crore principal and Rs 19,000 crore interests,” said the Chief Minister, pointing out that the sum was on account of non-adjustment of accounts for procurement done by state agencies for FCI from 2003-2004 onwards. He had been pursuing the matter since taking over as Chief Minister and it was now pending for decision with the Union Finance Ministry, Captain Amarinder Singh told the Prime Minister. He further pointed out that the state was already facing an annual interest payment liability of Rs 324 crore and the total payoff might touch Rs 65,000 crore, which was totally untenable for the state.The Chief Minister also reiterated his demand for special package for the development of the border areas of Punjab, which he had been pushing for in view of the fact that the state has an active International Border, with several thickly populated areas located close to it. Captain Amarinder Singh lamented that the criteria for allocation of funds for Border Areas Development was unfavourable for Punjab and requested Modi’s support in correcting the anomaly. Captain Amarinder Singh also made a strong request to the Prime Minister for central financial assistance for the celebrations of the 550th anniversary of Prakash Utsav of Sri Guru Nanak Dev, beginning November 2019.
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