CM to inaugurate Rs 2K scheme for BPL families at Secretariat tomorrow

Chennai: The Rs 2,000 special financial assistance scheme for people below poverty line, announced by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami will be inaugurated by him during tomorrow at the Secretariat. Sources said the amount will be deposited in the bank accounts of the people.

Announcing the scheme in the State Assembly during the budget session this year, Palaniswami said the money was being given on the grounds that poor people in several districts have been affected by Cyclone Gaja and drought-like situation following the failure of monsoon.

The measure would cost the State exchequer Rs 1,200 crore and the money would be allocated in the supplementary estimates for the year 2018-19. In all, 35 lakh BPL families in rural areas and 25 lakh BPL families in urban areas will benefit from this assistance.

It may be recalled that Madras High Court recently dismissed a PIL challenging the government’s move to extend a cash assistance of Rs 2,000 each to about 60 lakh BPL families in the State, holding that there was no irregularity or arbitrariness in the decision.

Moreover, it was a policy decision of the government to provide special financial help to the poor and those affected by the recent Gaja cyclone and drought and cannot be interfered with, a bench of Justices S Manikumar and Subramonioum Prasad said in its order.

In the public interest litigation, petitioner “Satta Panchayat Iyakka” – a non-governmental organisation – had contended that the number of below poverty line families given by the government was inflated and sought a direction against disbursement of the amount till the correct figure was arrived at based on authentic data.

NT Bureau