By Our Staff Reporter
New Delhi/Dehradun, 23 Jun: Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami today paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi. Prime Minister Modi gave a patient hearing to all the requests made by the Chief Minister with regard to Uttarakhand and assured cooperation. The Chief Minister expressed gratitude on behalf of the people of Uttarakhand for the guidance being given by the Prime Minister on development in Uttarakhand and for the cooperation of the Centre in this regard. The Chief Minister urged the Prime Minister to extend the GST compensation period for Uttarakhand beyond June 2022. In addition, Dhami also urged Modi to approve setting up of a branch of the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research in Uttarakhand, to approve establishing connectivity between the ancient temples of Kumaon region. Dhami also urged Modi to give approval to the “Mala Mission”. He further asked Modi to direct the officers concerned to ensure early operation of fixed-winged aircraft from Pithoragarh airstrip. The CM also requested the PM to ensure cooperation of the Centre in transferring the 25 percent equity shareholding of THDC India Ltd to the state of Uttarakhand.
During his interaction with the PM, the CM said that Uttarakhand was fast emerging as a pharmaceutical hub of the country. The pharmaceutical manufacturing units established in the state of Uttarakhand accounted for about 20 percent of the total manufacturing of medicines in the country. More than 300 pharmaceutical manufacturing units are established in 3 major industrial complexes in Dehradun, Haridwar and Udham Singh Nagar. These are providing employment to more than 1 lakh persons. In this connection, Dhami urged Modi to direct officials concerned to set up a branch of the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research in Uttarakhand. This, he claimed, would give a boost to pharmaceutical research in the state. The required land would be made available by the state government for the institute.
The Chief Minister added that, in order to provide revenue security to the states after the implementation of GST, arrangements were made to provide compensate for a period of 5 years i.e. till 30 June, 2022. But due to structural changes, low consumption base in the state and inadequate service base in the state as also other reasons, Uttarakhand could not witness the expected growth in revenue after the implementation of GST. In view of the limited economic resources of the state, the Chief Minister requested the PM to extend the period of GST compensation for some more years after June 2022.
The Chief Minister also informed the Prime Minister that the tender process had been completed for operating fixed-wing (aircraft) air service from the airstrip in Pithoragarh, the border district of the state. He requested the Prime Minister to direct the officers concerned to speedily ensure regular operation of air services from Pithoragarh Airstrip.
Dhami reminded that Kedarnath and Badrinath are being developed as per a master plan under the guidance of the Prime Minister. He requested the PM for approval of the “Manas Khand Mandir Mala Mission” for the purpose of connecting the ancient temples of mythological importance in Kumaon region.
The Chief Minister informed the PM that THDC India Ltd is a joint venture with 75 percent stake of the Government of India and 25 percent of the Government of Uttar Pradesh. According to Section 47(3) of the Uttar Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2000, on the basis of capital investment made by Uttar Pradesh in THDC India Ltd till the date of partition, its ownership ought to be transferred to Uttarakhand as THDC India Ltd is located in Uttarakhand. About 70 percent of the projects of THDC India Ltd are also located in Uttarakhand. Not only that, Uttarakhand also has to face the challenges related to rehabilitation, law and order and other social and environmental issues arising out of the above projects. In the year 2012, under Article-131 of the Constitution of India, Uttarakhand had approached the Supreme Court for transfer of 25 percent shares of THDC to Uttarakhand State and the case is currently under consideration of the Court.
The Chief Minister requested the Prime Minister for his help in getting the 25 percent equity in THDC transferred from Uttar Pradesh.
The Chief Minister thanked the Prime Minister and said that, under the guidance of the Prime Minister, all-round development is being ensured in the fields of health, education, roads, energy, etc. As per his expectation, by the year 2025, Uttarakhand would become one of the leading states of the country during the silver jubilee of its existence as a separate state. The Chief Minister also invited the Prime Minister to visit Mayawati Ashram near Lohaghat.