CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu government spent Rs 8,667 crore since 2011-12 to gift free fans, mixies and grinders to family card holders. In the last four years, lakhs of women got these kitchenware. The 1.85 crore family card holders who get 20 kg rice free are eligible for these items.
The Information and Special Programme Implementation Minister KT Rajenthra Bhalaji on Wednesday reviewed the scheme’s progress and directed officials to complete the distribution by the end of this year.
He also examined the details of firms which check the quality of fans, mixies and grinders, counter-checking the quality of these goods at the districts and the ongoing distribution of these articles to family card holders. The minister also reviewed the service centres across the State which repair these items. In 2011-12, Rs 1,370 crore was allotted for the scheme and 25 lakh women got the items. Next year, Rs 2,000 crore was allotted and 35 lakh women got the items. In 2013-14, Rs 1,500 crore was sanctioned for this scheme and another 35 lakh women received these items. During 2014-15, the target is 45 lakh women and of this 35 lakh women have already been covered. Rest of the fans, mixies and grinders are being despatched to the districts. During 2015-16, 45 lakh women would be given these items. For 2014-15 and 2015-16, the government sanctioned Rs 3,797 crore.
The Scheme was launched by the Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on September 15, 2011, at Kakkalur, Tiruvallur district. She said, “The provision of fan, mixie and grinder would lessen the workload of housewives and they could spend their time earning more money or for self-improvement and social service. At a time when richer families can arrange for air-conditioners, it would be fair to provide a fan to the grass-root level people.”