Centre misusing investigating agencies: Himachal CM

Mandi: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Monday accused the union government of misusing central investigating agencies against its political opponents. The union government had also failed to redress the core issues facing the country and it was only concerned about harassing its political rivals through the Central Bureau of Investigation, the Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax authorities, he said while addressing a public meeting here. The chief minister said the 14th Finance Commission provided for funds for developmental works in panchayats but not zila parishads and panchayati samitis. Virbhadra Singh said he had raised the issue with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and was hopeful that suitable provisions would be made for these two Panchayati Raj institutions. "If the Centre did not do this, we will provide funds for developmental activities in zila parishads and panchayati samitis in Himachal," the chief minister said. Virbhadra Singh said the Centre had set up the Niti (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog in place of the Yojana Aayog but even though he was a member of the new body by virtue of being the chief minister he was still unaware of the Niti Aayog's working. On the two years of the Narendra Modi government, he said its "development has been confined only to publicity" while nothing has been done at the ground level.