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Centre not giving enough funds for irrigation : Bengal Minister

PTI | Kolkata |

West Bengal Irrigation Minister Rajib Banerjee told the assembly today that the state government was unable to undertake dredging of rivers as it was facing funds crunch and the Centre was not providing any financial assistance.

The state is fund starved at the moment, he said during question hour when some members pointed out the issue of dredging of rivers.

Banerjee said earlier the Centre used to provide 80 per cent of the total funds requirement, a pattern which was later altered to 75:25.

But now, the Centre has brought down the ratio to 50:50 and was still not providing the required funds, he said adding the state was repeatedly writing to the concerned central ministry but to no avail.

Regarding reconstruction of embankments which were destroyed by cyclonic storm Aila in 2009, he said the Centre had provided only Rs 1339 crore and not Rs 5000 crore as rumoured.

The state with its own resources was carrying out the reconstruction work giving priority to vulnerable points, Banerjee added.