New Delhi, Aug 5: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday and raised a host of issues concerning her state, including GST dues and timely release of funds by the Centre under various schemes.
The Prime Minister’s Office shared a picture of the meeting, which lasted about an hour.
In a memorandum to the Prime Minister, Banerjee said she had repeatedly sought his intervention for urgent release of funds due to the state on account of the implementation of the rural job scheme MGNREGA, PM Awas Yojana and the PM Gramin Sadak Yojana.
The amount due to the state under these schemes now stood at about Rs 17,996.32 crore, she said.
In her memorandum, Banerjee has tabulated the total amount due to the state under different schemes and benefits. The amount that is due to the state from the central government as on 31st July, 2022 has been estimated to be around Rs 1,00,968.44 crore.
Banerjee has often accused the BJP-led central government of delaying the payment of Goods and Services Tax (GST) dues to states, especially the ones ruled by opposition parties.
After the meeting, Banerjee directly went to meet President Droupadi Murmu.
Banerjee, who arrived here on a four-day visit on Thursday, is likely to attend a Niti Aayog governing council meeting on August 7 to be chaired by Prime Minister Modi. She did not attend the meeting last year.
Banerjee’s meeting with the prime minister came close on the heels of the Enforcement Directorate arresting now-removed West Bengal Minister Partha Chatterjee and his aide Arpita Mukherjee and recovering huge cash and jewellery in connection with an alleged school jobs scam.
However, it was not known if the issue was featured in the meeting. Banerjee’s meeting also holds importance ahead of the August 6 vice-presidential poll, from which her Trinamool Congress party has decided to abstain.
The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) has fielded former West Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar as its vice-presidential candidate while the opposition parties have nominated Margaret Alva.