Harish Rao urges FM Nirmala Sitharaman to release funds for TS

Writes letter detailing central grants that are outstanding since 2018-19

Hyderabad: Ahead of presenting the state Budget for 2022-23, finance minister T. Harish Rao has written to Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, urging the Centre to ensure an early release of grants due to the state from 2018-19.

Rao stated that grants under Section 94(2) of the AP Reorganisation Act towards development of backward areas for 2019-20 and 2021-22 amounting to Rs 900 crore were yet to be released. He urged her to extend the annual grant of Rs 450 crore by another five years. He mentioned that this figure falls short of the requirement of Rs 30,751 crore and the amount of Rs. 24,205 crore that has been recommended by NITI Aayog.

He pointed out that grants recommended by the Fourteenth Finance Commission to Telangana were denied by the Centre without any specific reason, although the state had fulfilled all stipulations. Rao urged her to reconsider and release grants amounting to Rs 817.61 crore (Rs 315.32 crore for rural local bodies and Rs 502.29 crore for urban local bodies) as recommended by the Commission.

He said that the 15 Finance Commission had recommended Rs 723 crore as a special grant for 2020-21 as the tax devolution for the state was projected to decline in absolute terms in 2020-21 compared to 2019-20.

Harish took up the issue of wrongful release of Rs 495.2 crore towards the Centre's share of centrally sponsored schemes (CSS) being implemented in Telangana to Andhra Pradesh in 2014-15. He said the amount, which was due to Telangana, was wrongly released to Andhra Pradesh. Though the issue was taken up with the Andhra Pradesh government and also the accountant general, the amount was yet to be adjusted to Telangana, he pointed out.

Harish Rao sought release of IGST settlement dues totaling Rs 210 crore, which is the due share of Telangana from the IGST amount of Rs 13,944 crore transferred by the Centre to the consolidated fund of India in the year 2018-19.

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