Maharashtra cabinet takes up Kelkar report on development backlog

A month after taking charge as the Chief Minister, Devendra Fadnavis has got down to tackling the long-pending issue of removal of development backlog of Vidarbha and Marathwada regions of Maharashtra.

An official said here that a presentation on the report submitted by a committee headed by the economist Vijay Kelkar was today made before the Chief Minister and the cabinet.

The previous Congress-NCP government, dominated by leaders from Western Maharashtra, had kept the report on the back-burner after the committee submitted it to the Governor in October last year.

The government had promised to table it in the 2013 winter session of Assembly, but nothing happened.

The Kelkar committee was constituted in May 2011. After several extensions, it submitted the report two years late.

The committee studied the regional imbalance with regard to irrigation, agriculture, education, business, industries, self-employment and private investment.

During the 2013 winter session, the then Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan had claimed that the report was being studied and once the government allocated funds as per the committee's recommendations, nobody would seek a separate state of Vidarbha.

Fadnavis, known to be a votary of separate Vidarbha, had alleged back then that Congress and NCP did not want to give Vidarbha and Marathwada their due.

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