The government has said it is keen on extending the term of the regional statutory boards whose terms expire on April 30.
“Let me assure you that the government wants to extend the term of the regional statutory board. We still have eight days to do the needful,” Water Resources Minister, Ajit Pawar, said in the Council on Thursday.
Pawar was replying to a discussion on extending the tenure of these boards by another five years. Regional statutory development boards for Vidarbha, Marathwada and the rest of the state were formed under the Constitution of India.
Established 15 years ago, these boards distribute development funds to regions.
Regional leaders have been calling for the extension of the boards’ terms to ensure equitable distribution of resources and wealth to underdeveloped regions.
There have been allegations by regional representatives that in spite of allocation to areas like Vidarbha and Marathwada, money for these areas is diverted to regions like Western Maharashtra.
The issue has become a political one with leaders from Vidarbha, including senior Congress leader, Vilas Muttemwar, accusing Chief Minister, Ashok Chavan, for sitting on the proposal to extend the tenure for too long.
The state government will have to approach the Centre for an extension because these boards were formed by a central law.