Pressing its demand for three-year moratorium for West Bengal on repayment of loans, key UPA ally Trinamool Congress on Tuesday slammed the government on various policy issues including land acquisition, Right to Education and taxation.
Participating in the debate on Finance Bill in the Lok Sabha, Trinamool member Kalyan Banerjee asked the Centre to immediately consider the West Bengal government’s demand for moratorium on loan repayment for the State on the lines of Punjab.
Describing it as an important issue that needed to be addressed immediately, he reminded that the West Bengal government had been repeatedly seeking the moratorium.
“Our leader Mamata Banerjee has been repeatedly requesting (the moratorium), please give it to us,” the Trinamool member said passionately.
Linking the Trinamool demand to collection of taxes by the Centre, Mr. Banerjee questioned why it was not granting moratorium when it was running the country on the basis of “100 per cent” taxes collected from the States.
“You get the lion’s share... States are facing financial problems... you take the benefit of taxes... you are not heeding to States facing problem. You are doing it at the cost of people coming from States,” he said.
Referring to the Centre’s decision to set up a committee to consider the state’s demand, he said, it was stated a month back but “where is the result? Where is the effect? ...there is no output.”
He said grant of moratorium had precedents as it was done in the case of Punjab between 1983-84 and 1988-89 when it was treated as “special term loan”. Such a step was taken again for Punjab between 2002 and 2006.