Dismissing the special package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a “political bluff”, chief minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday claimed that the Central government was splurging on advertisement to create and propagate a ‘false impression’ for gaining votes ahead of the elections.
“I am willing to debate the package or repackaging of old schemes with him (Modi). But will he come forward?,”asked Kumar, while releasing a fact-sheet of the schemes worth Rs 1.25 lakh crore announced under the special package by the Prime Minister at an Ara function.
He claimed that schemes amounting Rs 1.08 lakh crore of the package were mere repackaging of old schemes.
“The package contains new schemes amounting Rs 10,368 crores only, which too do not have any defined timeline for allocation or modalities of disbursement of the fund,” claimed the chief minister at a media conference.
“There was hardly any movement in the ministry of finance as to how money would be arranged. They know most of the projects are being carried by PSUs or different ministries out of budgetary allocation and they need not give anything new from its coffer,” he said.
Kumar, who has been declared as the chief minister candidate of the Grand Alliance, said he would expose the truth behind the special package in ‘Janata ki Adalat’ (people’s court).
Giving sector-wise details of the projects included in the special package, Kumar gave figures to lay bare the “truth of the package”.
He also posted the details on Facebook and Twitter saying 41 National Highway projects have been made part of the special package at an estimated cost of Rs 54,713 crore.
“Out of this, Rs 47,553 crore is previously sanctioned cost and only Rs 7,160 crore is new and incremental budgetary allocation,” he said.
On the Centre’s bid to include Rs 20,000 crore for ultra mega power plant, the chief minister said, “The state government is required to arrange resources for it, while a private company would make the investment. Where does the role of Centre come in it?.
Kumar said: “It is my duty as chief minister to expose the truth and facts of the special package announced by Modi.”