January 26, 2012 admin

Congress has unique track record in dealing with corruption: Mr Pranab Mukherjee

CHANDIGARH, January 25: Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today said that Congress has a unique track record in dealing with corruption and the same thing could not be said about other parties.
He also disputed the charges by the Akali-BJP alliance government in Punjab that centre had been discriminatory towards the state. He said, centre had provided generous aid to the state whenever asked and even without askance.
Addressing a press conference here today, he pointed out, whether it was a minister, a Chief Minister or any other senior leader, wherever there was a complaint immediate action was taken.
“This is not true about other parties”, he pointed out, while referring to a national party whose president was caught live on camera accepting bribe in connection with a defence deal.
Replying to a question about the Punjab debt, he said, the Thirteenth Finance Commission had identified three states of Punjab, West Bengal and Kerala which were “debt stressed” and if corrective measures were not taken these can fall in the debt trap.
He said, the commission wanted these states to improve the Tax-GSDP (Gross State Domestic Product) ratio. He said, Punjab’s Tax-GSDP ratio was low at around 7 per cent while there were some other states in the country whose Tax-GSDP ratio was as high as nine percent.
The Union Finance Minister maintained that Punjab needs effective fiscal management as the state’s debt was somewhere between Rs 70,000 to 72,000 crores, which was about 40 per cent of its GSDP.
He disclosed that the food inflation has come down substantially. He said food inflation, which touched the peak of 22 per cent in February 2010, dropped considerably to less than 1 per cent last month. "Inflationary pressure remained for 22 months. The food inflation was as high as 22 per cent in February 2010 which has come down to less than 1 per cent in December 2011," Mr Mukherjee said.
On the issue of subsidies, the Finance Minister said, the subsidies have to be institutionalized as was being done through the Food Security Act, already passed by the union cabinet which will enable people living below poverty line to get food at highly subsidized prices.
To a question about the discrimination with states like Punjab and Haryana after giving tax concessions to other states of Himachal Pradesh and Uttrakhand, he said, the experiment had failed as now new investments had come, but only the industry had shifted from one place to another. He pointed out, this had been done by the National Democratic Alliance government and he had stopped it.

Translate »