The Central government has decided to provide an amount of Rs.350 crore at the rate of Rs.50 crore per district for the development of seven backward districts covering Rayalseema and North Coastal Region During 2015-16, said Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Planning Rao Inderjit Singh in a written reply in Rajya Sabha on Monday.
The Minister said that the Special Development Package proposal of Andhra Pradesh seeking Special Development Assistance for its backward areas particularly Rayalaseema and North Coastal Regions for an amount of Rs.24,350 crore over a period of five years (2014-15 to 2018-19).
In a meeting convened by erstwhile Planning Commission with the officials of State Government of Andhra Pradesh, it was decided that the Special Development Package proposal needs to be examined keeping in view the convergence with the ongoing Centrally Sponsored Schemes so as to consider the additional requirement of funds under the package.
Hence, the State Government had sent a revised proposal in which the Special Development Assistance for its backward areas was estimated at the earlier level with different sectoral priorities and the Ministry of Finance has released an amount of Rs.350 crore to Government of Andhra Pradesh under Special Development Package at the rate of Rs.50 crore per District in seven backward districts of Andhra Pradesh during 2014-15 for the developmental activities covering Rayalseema and North Coastal Region, the minister said.
The Central fund is too small for a newly formed state which was assured special package running into tens of thousands of crores before the bifurcation and even an ally as the ruling party has failed to elicit enough assistance from the centre. If the Centre sticks to Rs.350 crore per annum, it comes to merely Rs.1700 crore in five years as against Rs.24,350 sought by the state government.