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Tamil Nadu announces freebies, welfare schemes

Friday June 03, 2011 06:35:23 PM, IANS

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Chennai: Tamil Nadu Governor S.S. Barnala Friday announced a slew of welfare measures, including free laptops, green housing scheme for poor and direct crediting of old age pension, in his address to the newly constituted assembly's first session.

Barnala said the government will make efforts to provide an efficient, clean and transparent administration so as to attract investors, and went on to spell out schemes that were pledged by the ruling AIADMK in its election manifesto.

Barnala said the government will deposit the social security assistance given to the people in a bank account directly and the proceeds will be delivered to the beneficiaries through corresponding banking channels.

Similarly, the government will start the scheme for free distribution of laptops for school and college students, fans, mixies and grinders to women in September this year.

He said around 912,000 laptops and 2.5 million mixies, grinders and fans will be distributed this year.

In order to maintain the prices of essential items within manageable levels, the government has proposed setting up a Rs.50 crore price stabilisation fund so that cooperatives can source the items and sell these at cost price.

The cooperatives will be extended interest-free loans out of the fund for the purpose, Barnala said.

With a view that the state logs 10 percent growth, Barnala said the state government has plans to formulate a long-term vision document "Tamil Nadu 2025".

The government, apart from identifying and removing the growth bottlenecks, will also implement important infrastructure projects to take the state on a growth path.

On the industrial front, besides focusing on the traditional sectors like automobile, auto components, leather, textiles the government will also exert to attract ship building industries and also spread out industrialisation in other parts of the state.

In an attempt to increase from the current 27 percent to 46 percent by 2026 the share of public transport, Barnala said the government has decided to implement multi-modal transport system in Chennai.

Stating the high cost Metro rail system is planned only for 45 km, he said the government would implement mono-rail system for a distance of 111 km and later expand to 300 km gradually.

Studies will be undertaken to implement mono-rail system in other major cities like Madurai, Tiruchirapalli and Coimbatore.

He said government has also decided to scrap the Kalaignar Housing Scheme -- for conversion of thatched houses into concrete structure -- of the earlier government and instead build green houses.

Built on 300 sq. feet, the houses will be built at an outlay of Rs.180,000 by the government.

Barnala said the government will on experimental basis will introduce solar street lights in villages.




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