Stalin Bats for Pending Dues and More with Centre, Delhi Model School to Come Up in TN

On the second day of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin’s official visit to the national capital, he urged the Centre to consider a string of demands including release of over Rs 20,000 crore, nod for the anti-NEET Bill and a Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for footwear manufacturing.

Stalin, while praising the infrastructure in schools in the national capital, said his government would set up similar educational facilities in Tamil Nadu and invited Kejriwal for inauguration following completion of work. The CM also visited mohalla clinics in Delhi. Following his school visit, Stalin called on Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and underscored the pending dues to Tamil Nadu, including the GST compensation component. The dues from the Centre amount to Rs 20,860.40 crore of which the GST compensation was Rs 13,504.74 crore, he said in a memorandum and urged that the sum be released.

Stalin also reiterated his government’s demand of extending the present GST compensation regime (scheduled to end on June 30, 2022) by at least two more years. Later, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister along with Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal jointly chaired a meeting with officials.

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Stalin presented Goyal a memorandum seeking among others, a PLI scheme for footwear manufacturing and sanction for a Mega Textile Park under the PM-Mega Integrated Textiles Region and Apparel Park (PM-MITRA) scheme. At the TN House in Delhi, FIDE (Federation Internationale Des Echecs) president Arkady Dvorkovich called on Stalin. In the backdrop of Chennai being chosen as the venue for the upcoming 44th Chess Olympiad (July 27, 2022 to August 10, 2022), the meeting’s agenda was on expediting work to ensure a grand and successful conduct of the event.

Later, Stalin interacted with Tamil Nadu cadre IAS and IPS officials currently on central deputation. Stalin’s cabinet colleague, Tamil Nadu Health Minister Ma Subramanian met Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya. Subramanian, in a memorandum, requested the Centre to provide presidential assent to a Bill adopted by the Assembly seeking exemption to the state from the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET).

“Government of Tamil Nadu may be allowed to fill all professional seats including MBBS/BDS/AYUSH courses on basis of Class XII marks alone,” the state government urged. The TN government said a PLI scheme for footwear manufacturing would increase the productivity of existing players and make India the most favoured destination for footwear exporters. Also, the PLI scheme would aid in the import substitution for input products such as ornaments, zippers, soles, buckles, and embellishments, the government said.

The Centre must urgently intervene to control steel prices while the export of steel must be controlled and should be permitted only after the domestic needs are fulfilled, it said. Early release of Rs 4,446.14 crore against the CMR (Custom Milled Rice) subsidy was among the other points raised by the state in the memorandum given to Goyal.

On the healthcare front, the Tamil Nadu government urged the Centre to expedite establishment of AIIMS at Madurai, sought a similar AIIMS facility for Coimbatore, and requested establishment of six new medical colleges under a centrally-sponsored scheme. Tamil Nadu said it was of the firm view that status-quo should be maintained on the admissions for state quota Post Graduate (PG) admissions seats.

Subramanian said, “I once again strongly reiterate the opposition of the state to the draft Post Graduate Medical Education Regulations, 2021, which hit at the very root of the federalism and request Government of India and National Medical Council to drop the proposed draft regulations.”

He requested the Centre to allow the medical students who returned from war-torn Ukraine to continue their studies domestically. On March 31, Stalin called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and presented him a memorandum that contained 14 demands. On Thursday, the Chief Minister had also met Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari. On April 2, DMK’s newly built party office would be inaugurated in Delhi.

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