Rawat demands green bonus of Rs 2,000 crore for Uttarakhand
In a letter to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Rawat claimed that Uttarakhand has an edge over other states of the country when it comes to environmental conservation and therefore it must be given a green bonus of Rs 2,000 crore, the chief minister’s media in-charge Surendra Kumar said in an official statement quoting him.
Such a bonus is necessary also in view of the large-scale damage caused by last year’s natural calamity, the high cost of public utilities in the state, closure of hydel projects as well as lack of private investments in its hill areas, the Chief Minister said.
Pointing out the extensive damage caused to basic infrastructure in the state by 2013 deluge which washed away a number of bridges and a vast network of roads, Rawat said it had dealt a fatal blow to tourism which is the mainstay of the state’s economy.
With a majority of the state’s population dependent on tourism, the deluge last year had led to loss of jobs and income opportunities.
Noting that even the 13th Finance commission had recommended giving Uttarakhand a green bonus as a compensation, he said it will help the state handle the onerous task of managing its natural resources.