Besides sharing of taxes between the Centre and the states, the Constitution provides for grants-in-aid to the states from the Central resources. There are two types of grants-in aid, viz, statutory grants and discretionary grants:
- Statutory Grants:
- Article 275 empowers the Parliament to make grants to the states which are in need of financial assistance and not to every state. Also, different sums may be fixed for different states. These sums are charged on the Consolidated Fund of India every year.
- Apart from this general provision, the Constitution also provides for specific grants for promoting the welfare of the scheduled tribes in a state or for raising the level of administration of the scheduled areas in a state including the State of Assam.
- The statutory grants under Article 275 (both general and specific) are given to the states on the recommendation of the Finance Commission.
Article 282 empowers both the Centre and the states to make any grants for any public purpose, even if it is not within their respective legislative competence.
Under this provision, the Centre makes grants to the states. The Centre is under no obligation to give these grants and the matter lies within its discretion.
Notably, the discretionary grants form the larger part of the Central grants to the states (when compared with that of the statutory grants).
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