Agartala: The central government may provide additional financial sops to the economically weak and revenue-starved northeastern states, Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar said here on Wednesday quoting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Sarkar along with state Finance Minister Badal Choudhury met Manmohan Singh in New Delhi on Monday and submitted a proposal for a Rs.13,600 crore financial package from the central government to tide over the fiscal crisis facing the Left-ruled state.

“The Prime Minister has asked the Finance Ministry, the Prime Minister's Office and the Planning Commission to jointly look into the fiscal necessity of the northeastern states,” Sarkar told reporters here.

“Various northeast states have sought extra economic aid from the centre. The Prime Minister has also admitted that the industry starved and economically fragile northeastern states need special financial treatment,” he added.

“We are hopeful that the centre would do something to tide over the economic crisis of the mountainous northeastern states,” Sarkar said.

Manmohan Singh was quoted by Choudhury as saying that Tripura is a well-administered state and maintains prudential financial management.

The Communist Party of India-Marxist led Left Front government in Tripura has been demanding a financial package of Rs.13,600 crore from the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) central government to overcome the severe financial crisis in the state in view of the 'erroneous recommendations of the 13th Finance Commission'.

“For adopting flawed normative formula by the commission and as the state government was not following the centre's directive to downsize its employee strength, the state was the severe victim of economic aid from the centre,” Sarkar said.

He said the Prime Minister did not make any commitment towards the state's demand.

Tripura sought around Rs.27,000 crore but the 13th Finance Commission had recommended the sanctioning of about Rs.16,350 crore in 2009. Its report was accepted by the central government last year.

Agencies