Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia today termed the Centre as the “biggest threat” to the country as he criticised the BJP government for “attacking” the federal structure by “increasing” the monetary share of states in centrally-sponsored schemes.
Citing communications from the NITI Aayog in the Delhi Assembly, Sisodia said the Centre was “confused” on whether Delhi was a state or a union territory.
He accused the Centre of “abdicating” its responsibility by reducing funds instead of increasing.
AAP MLA Kailash Gehlot brought a calling attention notice on NITI Aayog’s policies of formulation and implementation of centrally-sponsored schemes. He alleged that the government think-tank was an “unconstitutional body”.
“The Centre is the biggest threat to the country. Centre is very confused on whether Delhi is a state or a union territory with legislature. Initially, the Niti Aayog said Delhi is a union territory and in view of this Centre will provide 100 per cent funding for implementation of its schemes in Delhi.
“Later, it said Delhi is a union territory with a legislature and Delhi will have to provide funds of up to 40-50 per cent towards implementing these schemes,” Sisodia said.
Sisodia further claimed that through an August-17 office memorandum, NITI Aayog introduced new structures of sharing of funds for centrally-sponsored schemes, raising the share of the states up to 50 per cent in some cases.
“It is an attack on the federal structure. Centre is forcing states to implement its schemes in their areas, else it will not grant funds to states. Centre is trying to kill democracy, but we will not let that happen. I warn the Centre that it should not do any such thing,” Sisodia said.
As per the official memorandum, Centre will fund up to 60 per cent of core schemes and state will provide the rest and for general schemes, the two will have equal share. Earlier, states’ share was not more than 25 per cent, Sisodia said.
“We are ready to fund centrally-sponsored schemes if asked to do so. Centre has reduced the number of schemes to 28 from 66 which is against the interests of people. In the past, centre and states had a good partnership in implementing such schemes, the situation has changed,” he said.