Nitish bats for special status for Bihar

New Delhi: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar put forth the demand for granting Special Status to his state.
Addressing the fourth meeting of the NITI Aayog’s governing council; Kumar suggested replacing cooking food under the mid-day scheme with a direct benefit transfer.

Regarding the special status issue, Nitish claimed that this was necessary, as Bihar lagged behind on several key areas of human development like per capita income, education, health, electricity, institutional finance and others.

Nitish also labelled the increase in a states’ share in tax revenue from 32 to 42 per cent as being “merely a compositional shift.”

“The increase in tax transfers was negated to a large extent by the reduction in allocations by the centre for the central plan schemes and the centrally sponsored schemes to the States. Furthermore, the state-wise distribution pattern also led to a decrease in Bihar’s share from 10.917 per cent (XIII FC) and to 9.665 percent (XV FC),” he said in his address.

He also stated that Rs 2600 crore as Backward Region Grant Fund were due to be released to his state.

Earlier, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s Telugu Desam Party withdrew support from the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance over the latter’s failure to grant special status to his state. (ANI)