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Raman Singh knocks at PM door

Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh, who has threatened to ‘skip’ meetings of Planning Commission, on Wednesday asked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to review the plan panel’s decision to appoint activist Binayak Sen on a panel on health. HT reports.

delhi Updated: May 19, 2011 01:06 IST
HT Correspondent

Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh on Wednesday asked the Prime Minister to review the planning commission decision of appointing activist Binayak Sen on a panel on health, saying his contribution to health sector is "hugely exaggerated" and there is little on ground to support it.

He also said that Chhattisgarh government will not attend any meeting in the planning commission till the matter is resolved. The plan panel finalises the annual plan of every state in the country and a meeting in this regard with Chhatisgarh government was slated for June.

In a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the chief minister said the nomination of Sen, who has been convicted for waging war against the state for colluding with Naxals to set up a network, as member of a steering committee of Planning Commission on health is "shocking".

"There have been no precedents of this kind," he said, adding he will not attend any Planning Commission meeting till this matter is resolved.

"It appears strange that no other name in the entire country could be found for nomination in the aforesaid committee. Moreover, the so called contribution of Dr Binayak Sen to health sector has been hugely exaggerated and there is little on ground to support it," the BJP leader said.

The Chhattisgarh chief minister wrote a similar letter to Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia.

Singh said, "Planning Commission is the highest policy making body of country and is headed by your good self (Prime Minister). Needless to say, institutional integrity of Planning Commission is of paramount importance. In this backdrop, the nomination of Dr Binayak Sen who has been convicted for waging war against the state is shocking and against all norms and propriety."

Seeking the PM intervention, Singh said the plan panel decision should be reviewed and said he will not attend any meeting in the planning commission till the matter is resolved.