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Centre’s agenda in manipulating financial autonomy of states exposed: Siddaramaiah

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Bengaluru, Jan 18: Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Thursday stated that in a shocking revelation, BVR Subrahmanyam, CEO of NITI Aayog, has exposed the Narendra Modi Government’s hidden agenda in manipulating the financial autonomy of Indian states.
In a press release, Siddaramaiah stated, an article from Al Jazeera reveals the deep-seated issues plaguing the federal structure under the current administration, pointing towards a systematic strain on state finances and autonomy. secret
“We had always been raising this injustice but blind MPs of BJP were truly blind. Hope they wake up at the earliest,” he said and added that the implications of these actions were far-reaching, particularly for states like Karnataka, which have long voiced their struggles against such injustices.
“The Modi Government’s attempt to lower the states’ tax share from 42 per cent to 32 per cent and its subsequent concealment of this failed attempt in Parliament, where Modi spoke of empowering states, only adds to the narrative of duplicity. Since 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been involved in covert negotiations with the Finance Commission of India, aiming to significantly cut funds allocated to states. This move, resisted by the independent constitutional body, reveals a stark contrast between Modi’s public promises and his actual policies,” he explained.
“The revelation that the Modi Government had to hastily rewrite its maiden full budget in 48 hours to compensate for its failed strategy to retain a larger share of central taxes, exposes a two-faced approach to governance,” Siddaramaiah stated.
“BVR Subrahmanyam’s account of the rushed budget preparation, which resulted in severe cuts to crucial welfare programs, paints a grim picture of the government’s priorities. The halving of allocations for the Ministry of Women and Child Development, from Rs 36,000 crore to Rs 18,000 crore, is a stark example of how policy shifts at the central level can adversely affect the most vulnerable sections of society,” Siddaramaiah said.
He said that the government’s reliance on off-budget borrowing, as highlighted by BVR Subrahmanyam, further obscures the true state of federal finances and this practice, although keeping loans out of official records, ultimately burdens the government with repayment responsibilities.
Such financial manoeuvres contribute to a lack of transparency, undermining the principles of responsible governance, he said. (IANS)

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