Chennai, April 2 (IANS) The Tamil Nadu government on Thursday began to distribute Rs 1,000 and free essential items for each ‘rice only' ration card holder in the state.
In order to reduce crowds and maintain social distancing, token system was implemented at stores giving out ration items.
Chief Minister K. Palaniswami had earlier announced measures to help the poor tide over livelihood problems owing to the 21-day nationawide lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus.
The welfare measures involving an outlay of Rs 3,280 crore include cash assistance of Rs 1,000 each for all families with ration cards which are eligible to get rice; free supply of rice, oil, sugar, lentils in April for all ration card holders. Those who do not want the free supply can opt out by logging on to the website; and ration card holders who missed buying in March and buy their quota in April.
The state also announced free supply of 15 kg rice, 1 kg each of cooking oil and lentils for construction and unorganised sector workers from other states identified by the District Collector or welfare boards of the concerned unorganised sector; continued supply of subsidised food at Amma Canteens; and setting up of kitchens for supply of food for destitutes across the state.
The Chief Minister announced registered pavement vendors will be paid an additional Rs 1,000 in cash in addition to the Rs 1,000 paid through public distribution system; and two days special wages for those who had worked under the MNREGA.