After Centre did not accept her demand for moratorium on repayment of interests on loans
Having failed to get the Centre to accept her demand for a three-year moratorium on repayment of interest on loans accrued by past State governments, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said here on Monday that it should allow the States to collect Central taxes and use the amount to finance their own development activities.
“Let the State governments collect all the taxes. If the State government collects all the taxes, then there will be no problem,” she said, while addressing members of student and youth wings of the Trinamool Congress.
Criticising certain Ministers of the United Progressive Alliance government for claiming that Central schemes are funded by the Union government, Ms. Banerjee said the money with the Centre was a sum of its collections from the States.
“The money does not come from anyone’s pocket. The funds which the Centre allocates to the State governments are collected as taxes from the States,” she said. Of the overall taxes collected by the Centre, only 32 per cent is given to the State governments. West Bengal’s share is about 2.5 per cent.
Despite collecting money from the States, every day there is a hike in diesel prices and the subsidy on fertilizers has been lifted, Ms. Banerjee said.
“We do not have enough money even to pay salaries to State government employees,” she said. “Non-plan budgetary funds are used for this.”
Ms. Banerjee claimed that the Centre had deducted more money from the State government’s earnings last year on the ground that it was going to implement the Food Security Bill.
“In the Budget before the elections, we will see various other promises though they may not be always implemented …. Not all are as transparent as us,” she said.