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Mamata Banerjee Writes to Agri Minister, Clarifies After Amit Shah's 'Blocking' Central Schemes Accusation

Trinamool Congress president and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addresses a rally in Kolkata.

Trinamool Congress president and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee addresses a rally in Kolkata.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in a letter to Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said that she has already informed the Centre on September 9 regarding implementing the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sammann Nidhi (PMKSN) and funds routed through the state government.

A day after Union Home Minister Amit Shah launched a scathing attack on the West Bengal government on "blocking" central government schemes, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in a letter to Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said that she has already informed the Centre on September 9 regarding implementing the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sammann Nidhi (PMKSN) and funds routed through the state government.

Banerjee in her letter said, “You may kindly recall my letter dated September 9, 2020 regarding the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme launched by the central government. Decision of the central government on implementation of the scheme in West Bengal and transferring the requisite fund to the State government for onward distribution to the farmers through the state government machinery is still awaited.”

The letter further read, “The State government is already implementing a scheme of direct fund transfer to the farmers including the sharecroppers with death benefit scheme, as had been enumerated in my letter under reference. More than 73 lakh farmers are to be benefited under this scheme. I once again request you to kindly arrange to transfer the requisite fund to the State government, for onward disbursement with full responsibility to the farmer beneficiaries of the state through State government machinery.”

She also noted that after disbursement of funds under PM Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme, a list of beneficiaries will be sent to the Centre for their record. “I do hope that a decision in the matter will be taken very quickly and communicated to us,” she added.

The letter came after Amit Shah during his two day Bengal tour alleged that the TMC supremo is blocking all the central schemes including PM Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme.

Earlier, she also agreed to implement Ayushman Bharat schemes with a condition that the funds may be routed through the state government.

The PMKSN is an initiative taken by the Centre in which all farmers will get up to Rs 6,000 per year as minimum income support. The initiative was to be announced by Union Minister Piyush Goyal during the 2019 Interim Union Budget on 1 February 2019.

first published:December 21, 2020, 18:29 IST