Patna: Observing that the state has huge potential for industrial development, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday urged the Centre to tweak criteria for special status and accord it to the state so that it could get private investments in the industrial sector.

"We see a ray of hope in our effort for special status as Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram has talked about reviewing criteria to accommodate the aspirations of the economically backward states," said Kumar, who will hold a public meeting in New Delhi on March 17 to demand special status.

The first and foremost thing is that Bihar should be granted special status so that it could tap private investments for industrial development," Kumar said. The grant of special status was beneficial to states as it brought private investment since investors received tax-related incentives, the Chief Minister said.

Besides, special categories states also benefited in having to make less contribution in implementation of centrally sponsored schemes, he said. Once Bihar receives special status, it would enable the state government to utilize surplus funds upto about Rs 7,000 crore that would go into the implementation of central schemes for industrial development, Kumar said.

Kumar said that the state government planned to promote industrial development on its own for which policy decisions have been taken and various incentives provided to interested entrepreneurs.

(Agencies)

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