Aizawl: The Mizoram government today sought a Rs 48,164.05-crore grant from the 14th Finance Commission for the next five years (2015-2020).

The memorandum, submitted to the Finance Commission which was headed by chairman Y V Reddy, included Rs 35,009.17 crore for Non-Plan Revenue Deficit Grant before devolution of share of central taxes and Rs 8,046.73 crore for specific needs of the state.

Specific needs of the state included establishment of a Lokayukta amounting to Rs 122.21 crore, gap grant for deficit in implementation of the national food security scheme for Rs 82.05 crore.

Others were maintenance grant for roads and bridges (Rs 1,515 crore), maintenance grants for building (Rs 375 crore), administrative cost for three autonomous district councils (Rs 1,850.66 crore) and grants for corporatisation of the state power department (Rs 686 crore).

The Mizoram government also asked for Rs 75.83 crore for creation of three more districts besides the existing eight.

While larger states received four to five per cent of the share of central taxes, Mizoram received less than 0.3 per cent, the memorandum said, asking that the share of taxes should be increased to a minimum of at least one per cent.

The memorandum was submitted in a meeting held by the Finance Commission and the council of ministers headed by the Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla. State Chief Secretary L Tochhong along with other top officials attended the meeting.

In the meeting held here with the 14th Finance Commission and the members of the council of ministers, Thanhawla said that poverty and unemployment were two big problems of the state and emphasised the need for providing employment opportunities to youths.

“To achieve prosperity side by side with sustained peace, we need to provide employment opportunity to the growing young generation through massive public investment,” he said.

“Mizoram state finances were passing through a difficult time,” the chief minister said, adding the Commission might consider transfer of much higher quantum of non-plan fund to the state so that the government could take up poverty alleviation schemes on a wider scale.

He also asked for higher quantum of non-plan fund to bridge the gap in non-plan account and to include the impending liabilities in the assessment of non-plan revenue expenditure in view of the possible impact of the seventh pay commission.

He said that the state was trying to achieve a reasonable degree of financial self-dependence and thus required the assistance and guidance of the Finance Commission.

“My fervent appeal to you is — help us now to enable us to help ourselves,” Thanhawla said.

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