CM questions financial packages to states given by Pranab

Bhubaneswar: Hitting out at UPA`s presidential candidate Pranab Mukherjee for providing financial packages to West Bengal, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday sought to know the motive behind doling out hefty funds to these states.

During his tenure as the Finance Minister, Mukherjee had doled out lakhs of crore of rupees to West Bengal, Bihar and UP, Patnaik told reporters on his return here from a five-day visit to Delhi.
"People have the right to know as to why these hefty financial packages were provided to these states as huge public money was involved," said the BJD supremo, who had accompanied opposition presidential candidate P A Sangma during filing of his nomination in Delhi.

Though there is no objection to financial packages given to these states one needs to know the intention and motive behind it, Patnaik said asking, "Was it provided keeping in mind the ensuing Presidential polls?"

Patnaik`s remarks came hours after he and Sangma were accused by Congress of violating the Constitution by trying to influence the voters using tribal and religion card.

Describing Sangma as a prominent tribal leader, the Chief Minister said the former Lok Sabha Speaker`s prospects in the race for the top post were getting stronger. Stating that presidential election was significant, he said probity, integrity and honesty should be given importance.

To a query, the BJD supremo said his party would have no alliance with BJP or Congress in future.