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Rediff.com  » News » 'Did Pranab grant funds to Bihar, Bengal, UP to get votes?'

'Did Pranab grant funds to Bihar, Bengal, UP to get votes?'

Last updated on: July 2, 2012 17:41 IST

'Pranab doled out huge sums of money'

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Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has questioned the granting of hefty funds to certain states by Pranab Mukherjee, the United Progressive Alliance's Presidential candidate, and sought to know if this was meant to influence the ruling parties including Samajwadi Party, Janata Dal - United and the Trinamool Congress.

"Pranab Mukherjee as the finance minister had doled out huge sums of money amounting to lakhs of crores to Bihar, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh," Patnaik said after returning to Bhubaneshwar from Delhi on Sunday night.

"Could it be that this money is going because he wanted certain parties like Samajwadi Party of Mulayam Singh, Nitish Kumar's JD-U and Trinamool Congress of Mamata Banerjee to support his candidature as the President of India," asked Patnaik.

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Image: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik


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'This is your money'

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Stating that this was people's money, Patnaik said, "This is your money. I am glad that people of those states will benefit, (but why is) so much money being given by the central government when the Rastrapati elections are going on?"

The chief minister, who had accompanied opposition presidential candidate P A Sangma when the latter filed his nomination in Delhi, said people had the right to know why hefty financial packages were being provided to these states.

While Bihar will get Rs 20,000 crore during the 12th plan period from 2012 to 2017, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has publicly stated that his government was expecting a Rs 90,000 crore package.

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Image: Pranab Mukherjee and P A Sangma


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'Why is so much money being given'

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Patnaik described Sangma as a prominent tribal leader who hailed from a minority community and belonged to the north-east.

Bharatiya Janata Party and Shiromani Akali Dal are also backing Sangma, who was first named by the Biju Janata Dal and supported by the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.

Patnaik also made it clear that his party would have no alliance either with the BJP or the Congress in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

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Image: Pranab Mukherjee


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