Special state demand gains momentum in Jharkhand   


Ranchi, Nov 7 (IANS) Leaders across the political spectrum, except those of the Congress, have raised their pitch for a special status for Jharkhand after the demand was made by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar at his "Adhikar rally" in Patna Nov 4.

"Jharkhand is rich in natural resources but its people are poor. The state resources are being utilised by other states to achieve prosperity. Jharkhand deserves the special status," said state assembly Speaker C.P. Singh, who is a Bharatiya Janata Party legislator.

Cooperative Affairs Minister and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha leader Haji Hussain Ansari said: "Jharkhand is a backward state and the central government should provide it the special state status automatically."

The Congress, however, said that instead of making it a political issue, the state government should focus on development.

"The BJP-led government failed to spend state and central funds meant for different schemes and programmes. The Munda government is making it a political issue. It should first develop the system to spend the funds properly," Jharkhand Congress spokesperson Shailesh Sinha told IANS.

Chief Minister Arjun Munda has raised the issue with the central government on several occasions. In the National Development Council (NDC) meeting this year, the chief minister sought special package for infrastructure development and raising various human development indicators in the state.


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