Press Statement

The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:

On Centre-States Commission

The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) is seriously concerned about the terms of reference as well as the composition of the new commission on Centre-State relations announced on April 27, 2007. The terms of reference of the Commission do not include any of the major points in the Centre-State relations such as the needed increase in the share of central taxes for the states, transfer of centrally sponsored schemes in the state subjects to the states and the alleviation of the problem of debt burden on the state, although all these items were emphasised in the National Common Minimum Programme of the UPA.

Moreover, there has been an intrusion into the jurisdiction of the states when in item (j) and (k) of the terms of reference, the issue of suo moto interference in the sphere of law and order as well as suo moto deployment of central forces for certain category of crimes have been mentioned along with the idea of setting up of a central law enforcing agency. These go against the basic issue viz. the law and order being a state subject.

The concern is also about the composition of the commission where no noted expert on centre-state relations has been included.

A convention has been adopted in recent years where even for a Constitutionally mandated commission such as the Finance Commission the states are consulted before the terms of reference of the Commission are published. There has been a gross violation of the convention in this case because the states have not been consulted on the matter. The CPI(M) Polit Bureau is dismayed with the terms of reference and formation of the Commission and strongly urges for a review of the entire matter in the forthcoming meeting of the National Development Council before any final decision is taken.