Centre comes in for flak

“Persistent indifference” toward the State's concerns lamented

January 31, 2012 02:31 am | Updated November 17, 2021 05:13 am IST - CHENNAI:

The Centre on Monday came in for some sharp criticism in the Governor's address to the Assembly. Tamil Nadu accused the Union government of “persistent indifference” toward its concerns on inter-State issues and criticised attempts to push through legislations that encroached on the powers of States.

Asserting that the government would never compromise on its rights in the Mullaperiyar dam dispute, Governor K. Rosaiah said, “Unfortunately, being a lower riparian State, Tamil Nadu has often been the victim of false and parochial campaigns launched with short-sighted political interests and the persistent indifference of the Union government.”

Maintaining that the State had shown utmost restraint and ably handled recent incidents relating to the dam, he dubbed Kerala's attempts “to whip up mass fear and insecurity through false propaganda” as the primary cause of these incidents. Tamil Nadu was all for ensuring the dam's safety. He appealed to the people of Kerala not to succumb to such “malicious campaigns”.

Urging the Centre to direct Kerala to abide by the Supreme Court's decision, he said that as several inter-State river water disputes remained unresolved for years, the time had come for a rethink on the institutional framework. The proposed Dam Safety Bill should provide entrusting the safety of dams to the Dam Safety Cell of the State that owned the dam, instead of the State where it was situated.

The Governor assailed attempts to make laws that encroached on the powers of States. The Centre should only fix broad objectives and framework in formulating national schemes and allow State governments to design schemes to meet their specific needs by dovetailing Central funds with the State's resources.

The State would continue to impress on the Centre the need to address issues it had pointed out regarding implementation of Goods and Services Tax. It would continue to oppose the Food Security Bill.

The Governor thanked the Centre for releasing Rs.500 crore for rehabilitation measures in cyclone-hit districts

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