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Begging bowl comment irks Mukul

SHILLONG: Chief Minister Mukul Sangma has lashed out at critics who often blame northeastern states for coming to Delhi with begging bowls.
Addressing a gathering at Shillong Polytechnic at the foundation stone laying ceremony of the Shillong Government Engineering College, Sangma said, “There is nothing called begging bowl. Nobody is going to give when we beg. There is no space for begging bowl in the Constitution. We have to work hard and use our resources wisely.”
Referring to the constitutional provisions for distribution of resources in the country, he said, “Where are the resources coming from? The resources are coming from the states. Whatever resources go to the Government of India’s coffers come from the states. If the states don’t perform, the economy will slow down and nation will suffer.”
Praising the performance of the region, Sangma said the growth rate in the North East has crossed two digits and “people dare to say that we are not performing”.
“Even China has come down now but Meghalaya is going at proper level of growth,” he added.
The chief minister argued that only a few states, like Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat, are contributing to the country’s revenue.
He blamed the NDA Government at the Centre for creating challenges for states by putting share of funds in centrally sponsored schemes at 50:50.
“All centrally sponsored schemes went for a toss after 2014 and 2015 (after the BJP-led NDA came to power) because the Government of India could not decide on the funding pattern as we don’t want to go for the 50:50 funding,” he said.
He said the state government had to fight to get back the 90:10 funding. “We prevailed and got the 90:10 funding. If you don’t fight and surrender, it will be assumed that it is fine,” he added.

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