Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy on Sunday said he would place his brainchild project ‘Bangaru Thalli’ before the State Cabinet for ratification shortly.

He made this statement at a SHG women’s rally here on Sunday in the wake of a conscious effort by his detractors within the Cabinet to establish his ‘one man show’ by citing the controversial scheme as a ‘case in point’.

Mr. Reddy further stated that he would give a legal status to the scheme by bringing in a piece of legislation in the coming winter session of the State Assembly some time in June. The programme is just an expression of the government’s strong resolve to protect girl children from foeticide and infanticide, manifesting in the form of uneven sex ratio, he said.

The scheme will provide nutritional support to lactating mothers with girl children and financial assistance to girl students for education. Besides this, Rs. 1 lakh each will be given to those who complete graduation despite poor economic status, he explained. “In a nutshell, the project intends to ensure that being born a girl is not a curse, but a boon to the nation as a whole,” he observed. In an apparent bid to woo women, the Chief Minister promised to implement 50 per cent reservation in allotment of seats for women in the forthcoming Panchayat Raj elections.

The Chief Minister’s address was interrupted by a slogan-shouting group of youth who staged demonstrations for Backward Class status for the Kapu community. Even as the protesters repeatedly tried to force their way to the dais through the crowds by displaying banners, Mr. Reddy, who was irked, asked the audience to ignore the ‘trouble makers’. In the meantime, the police in plain clothes pushed them away, restoring order at the meeting.

With Auto Nagar premises being the venue for a public rally involving the high-profile VIPs—Mr. Kiran Kumar Reddy and Union Minister for Rural Development Jairam Ramesh—the traffic on the busy highway went haywire for well over an hour.