SALEM: Responding to Stalin’s remarks that the government was ‘inefficient’ in curbing the COVID-19 outbreak in the State, the Chief Minister said, “Tamil Nadu stands first in the country in testing people for the viral infection and number of testing labs. The State government has been widely appreciated for its containment measures. As of now, there is no community spread in the State, and there is a spike in positive cases in containment zones of Chennai due to space crunch.”
Rs 35K crore revenue loss estimated
On revenue loss, Palaniswami said the State government would incur an estimated loss of `35,000 crore in terms of GST revenue due to the lockdown. All measures are being taken to overcome the revenue loss. The government is also implementing development works across the State, he explained.
Free power supply
On the Union government’s condition for increasing farmers’ borrowing limits, the Chief Minister said that the State would continue to ensure free electricity to them. “Providing free electricity for the cultivators is a dream project of former chief minister MG Ramachandran. The late chief minister J Jayalalithaa also followed his footsteps and assured the same during her tenure as the chief minister. So, the AIADMK will continue to provide electricity free of cost to the farmers,” he assured.
Class X exams from June 15
He said that as of now, Class X board exams have been completed in 15 states of the country. “As per the Centre’s guidelines, we have decided to conduct the exams from June 1 in Tamil Nadu. However, they have been postponed to June 15, considering requests from various sections of people,” he said.
Waterworks on full swing
With water from the Mettur dam to be released from June 12 for delta irrigation, Palaniswami said officials have been instructed to hasten waterworks under the Kudimaramathu scheme across the State. A special officer has been appointed to monitor dredging of canals in the water-flowing areas to ensure that every farmer gets his share.”
Palaniswami further said that over two crore ration-card holders have been given rice, dhal, oil and Rs 1,000 cash in the State. Besides, around 36 lakh workers from the unorganised sector have been given the essential items along with Rs 2,000 cash. The migrant workers were also given commodities like rice, dhal and oil.