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Updated: March 20, 2011 01:16 IST

DMK promises free wet grinder, 35 kg rice a month

Special Correspondent
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Chief Minister and DMK President M. Karunanidhi releasing the DMK party candidates' list on Thursday. The party released its manifesto on Saturday. Photo:R.Ragu
Chief Minister and DMK President M. Karunanidhi releasing the DMK party candidates' list on Thursday. The party released its manifesto on Saturday. Photo:R.Ragu

Provision of free rice of 35 kg a month to the poorest of the poor, distribution of free wet grinder or mixie to women and extension of free power supply scheme for horticulture are the highlights of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam's election manifesto for next month's Assembly elections.

Chief Minister and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam president M. Karunanidhi released the manifesto at the party headquarters in the presence of senior leaders of the DMK and allies. Finance Minister and DMK general secretary K. Anbazhagan received the first copy of the manifesto.

At present, rice of 35 kg is supplied every month at Re.1 a kg to the poorest of the poor, who have been covered under the Antyodaya Annayojana (AAY) scheme of the Central government. The number of beneficiaries is 18.64 lakh families. Though the State is following a universal public distribution system and does not classify families into Below Poverty Line (BPL) and Above Poverty Line (APL), the AAY families have been identified on the directions of the Supreme Court.

The manifesto stated that as the DMK was “fully aware” of the hardships of women, the party, after coming to power in the 2006 elections, implemented the scheme of distributing colour television sets. This time, free grinder or mixie would be given, according to their choice. The scheme of free power supply, which until now did not cover horticulture, will be extended to horticultural crops and coconut farming. Handloom weavers now getting 100 units of free power supply bimonthly will be supplied 200 units of free power in the event of the DMK coming back to power.

Senior citizens, aged 60 and above, would be issued free bus passes for travel in local buses. The old age pension of Rs.500 per month will be hiked to Rs.750 per month, the party assured people.

Coimbatore and Madurai would also be covered under the Metro Rail projects on the lines of the one for Chennai. The party also promised that the Chennai Metro Rail Project would be extended up to Mamallapuram and also up to Irungattukottai through the Sriperumpudur industrial area.

The financial assistance of Rs.75,000 given to beneficiaries under the Kalaignar Housing Scheme would be increased to Rs.1 lakh.

Laptops would be distributed free to first-year students of the Backward Classes, Most Backward Classes, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes pursuing professional degree courses in government and government-aided colleges.

The party document stated that a DMK government would examine the demand for absorbing the interest of educational loans issued to students during 2004-2009.

Mr. Karunanidhi averred that most of the electoral promises given by his party in the 2006 election had been fulfilled. His government had disproved the “malicious propaganda” that the assurances given before the previous elections remained on paper.

I would suggest all the voters of TN to not vote for these people who offer freebies because that is not good for the state in the long term. The voters should wake up to this fact asap.

from:  Krishan
Posted on: Apr 9, 2011 at 15:39 IST

Can some party/politician please promise clean, publicly maintained toilets and baths in each ward and for every three streets in urban areas? I'm sure it will benefit many more people and if they are well maintained (perhaps from local area funds) they will get the party many more votes. And free the streets/pavements for pedestrians! BTW, they have these in Bangalore - in fact have had it for four years or more now. And they are seriously clean and usable.

from:  Vichitra PK
Posted on: Mar 26, 2011 at 11:31 IST

Why not report the money earned by DMK after it gave away TVs. We are all so ignorant to not notice how they make money. Just travel around Tamil Nadu and you will see SUN Dish peeking out of every 8 out of 10 homes in every village, every town. Even if we assume one pays 100 Rupee for a connection and let's assume just 10 Lakh homes (a very conservative estimate for a population of greater than 6 crores), it comes to 10 crores every month. This is how you convert public money into private money. The tax comes from hard working middle class, who work hard and earn the money by proving their worth. While the politicians spend most of the time cheating with all the money they get from the middle class. They lack leaders. No doubt with all the money coming every month, the owner of SUN bought Spice on his own. Also, the media was so manipulated by PR that they shamelessly reported the person, son of a political leader, buying Spice.There are other angles too... western countries are so advanced and they exert enormous pressure for India to buy their technology and thereby stiffling innovation here. Make Indians more competitive, give them quality education. I request the government to please not go by what the service company leaders say. Go by the math and science people. They are the foundation for technology. Until we develop our own technological base, we will continue eat and cheat on our own resources.

from:  Karthik
Posted on: Mar 26, 2011 at 09:36 IST

All other freebies are just open bribery and injustice to governance. It is time that the Election Commission start a debate on freebies by political parties as it tries to do on paid news.

from:  harikrishna
Posted on: Mar 24, 2011 at 16:37 IST

Whenever DMK faces an election it announces several freebies to get votes from the poor sections. These freebies make "poor more poor". I hope this time around with the AIADMK and DMDK joining hands it will sweep past the DMK alliance and the Congress will get routed because of its biggest scandals in the history of India.

from:  K. Preethi
Posted on: Mar 24, 2011 at 08:47 IST

Your comments cover more critics of the present government than present situation. Is there any alternative party ready in Tamil Nadu to deliver corruption free govt? The AIADMK, after MGR rule has also seen much development of the party functionaries rather than going in for the people welfare measures. The communist parties shameless affiliation to AIADMK is a mockery, which has led to the public having no confidence in any party for the corruption-free govt in Tamil Nadu after DMDK also join hands with AIADK with intention to get as much MLA seats possibe as the later also could not face the election promising corrupt free govt. But providing some people who are identified with poor label with free tv, gas, land , houses, grinder , mixy etc. by the promise in their election manifesto is just assuring them fast food for a period of time instead of regular food permanently.

from:  N. chockalingam
Posted on: Mar 21, 2011 at 23:29 IST

This is a sham scheme, albeit a brilliant one, a new low for the veteran lawmaker. In any other country he would be held accountable for publicly trying to bribe voters and giving away taxpayers money like free laddoos. Now the opposition will be forced to promise even more freebies to counter this hack job. And still I go around saying 'East or West Chennai is the best!'.

from:  Vijay
Posted on: Mar 21, 2011 at 20:30 IST

Free passes to sr. citizens is most welcome idea and step by DMK. Similarly laptops to economically poor students. As also 35 Kg free rice to BPL people. No doubt,DMK would implement these schemes, if voted to power, as was done during present regime.

from:  UTHAYA
Posted on: Mar 21, 2011 at 15:15 IST

@B.J Jayapalan - Free bus pass for elderly is a welcome one and those low on income can travel free of cost, doesn't mean you will get beggars on the buses. Old people who can fend for themselves do deserve soemthing back from this society. It is a scheme to be appreciated and not to be talked bad about. It one of the good things announced so far by the DMK party. First thing, any government should start looking at is discriminating people as BC or MBC or whatever. They should start seeing all people at the same level. It's not healthy for a society to discriminate people by their caste, religion, language, employment or whatever else you can think of. These parties should commit on getting rid of corruption. If the pregnancy grant and the marriage grant has been increased, they should look at getting all the money direct to the people instead of middle man taking a cut on the money. The only way to get this done, is to get a bank account opened for all over 18+ and deposit the money direct to their bank, and hence no one else has access to these funds and the entire money goes to the people who need it..Better Infrastructure - Why not look at clean roads, clean parks, clean public places, plant more trees, promote eco friendly activities, better roads (not giving contract to someone who will lay road only to be spoiled in next rains). We should have Watchdog Groups, which monitor all government works and scrutinise every paisa the government spent and ensure that they are made the best use of and the work done is to the best standards.. All we need is a new class of politicians. Most or almost none of the politicians now will not qualify for it. Politicians who are really concerened about the people and society's welfare. Running a government is a social service and its their responsibility.. they should not deviate from it.

from:  Satya Gandhi
Posted on: Mar 21, 2011 at 13:06 IST

Again cheap tactics from DMK. It is the developmental statistics and agenda that should go as Poll manifesto and not these freebies. and Please give these free stuff from the scam money and not from my tax money.

from:  Balakrishnan
Posted on: Mar 21, 2011 at 09:05 IST

Well... another one more term of DMK in TN. I may have to vacate my house in Chennai and migrate permanently to somewer else. Not that I want to leave but DMK will buy Chennai and all of us will have to pay rent to them. Voltas -Teynampet. is a good example of their harrasement. I am sure AIADMK will do good for people because Ms.Jayalalitha is not behind voters who go for freebees. I keep my fingers crossed that something good happens to TN- I want to live happy in the the place I was born.

from:  Rakesh K
Posted on: Mar 21, 2011 at 07:28 IST

The TN will become a BANANA state of India. The DMK is giving away free items to make sure that the poor people remain poor and that they would vote DMK to power. People have to work to earn things and make themselves self-sufficient. What would the young people of TN learn from this foolish, crooked and corrupt ideas of the DMK politicians? The educated people should try to put a stop to this tactics by the DMK ? Well, when you have educated people like the VCs, Judges and bureaucrats making stupid suggestions to the DMK government to hand out freebies like cell phones to the farmers, how you and I can stop this crooked ideas of these crooked politicians.

from:  Ken Sundaram
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 16:37 IST

Declaration during Election is totally Cheating factor. Who is funding these schemes and who is paying Taxes? Is He/She benefitted? This has to be debated. Freebies are only fooling the people and increase the production of junk items in the market.

from:  Srinivasan Iyer
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 16:31 IST

Time and again, Tamil Nadu politics is getting publicity for all the wrong reasons. Why should these politicians paint an ugly picture on the voters potraying them as cash-for-vote and freebie-for-vote victims ? Any educated individual can sanely say that it is absolute cheating to call freebies as 'freebies', because this is not out of his own pocket but rather from the precious tax money paid by the fellow people. Another term by the DMK in Tamil Nadu, they will takeover all businesses, ventures and expand their hegemony of monopoly in all possbile fields. This current DMK rule is like a cancer which needs harsh treatment from the citizen doctors !

from:  Shakthi Varman
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 15:47 IST

The intention of thr D.M.K.party that all poorest of the poor must enjoy the basic amenities in life should,no doubt, be lauded;but the common voters wonders who will be ready to work for salary? Will not our industrialists in Tamil Nadu who usually face with labour problem,meet labourless problem? D.M.K.must revise its manifesto and assure 'one family...one job' policy instead of giving feebies.

from:  DR.R.Meher Ali
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 15:11 IST

Such free schemes have already put TN in severe debt!!

from:  Subhasree
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 14:18 IST

The DMK is wooing the Tamilnadu voters with Kitchen grinders and other items if the people voted them again. This is really not a gift to the people but they are trying to corrupt the people legally which the Election Commission should ban.I also recommend to the DMK party, people like me are looking forward to a ,Quarter bottle of liquor of any brand combined with soda and pickles packet in the evenings weekly three times' by this more votes will be poled to DMK.

from:  Thodla Venkatasubramanyam
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 13:35 IST

It's a shame how these political parties treat poor people as beggars and idiots. Getting bribe for casting vote is a great shame.

from:  Sharan
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 12:36 IST

The DMK manifesto promises one thing or other to majority families in Tamil Nadu. Either a new home, or the barren land, for the student or women or the aged, why differentiate, almost all sections of the society are rained with one benefit or other. Few families are bound to get multiple benefits. The policy of 'Give what you can' is one thing but then enabling the families to become 'Produce/ Earn and Sustain' is another thing. The former will make the state to become more welfare- oriented and the latter will make the citizens to progress with equity and justice. No doubt, there is development/ investment or ideas to encourage entrepreneurial talents However, these ideas have taken the back seat. Free gifts have out weighed investment / growth oriented ideas. Perhaps the manifesto must have been prepared by an economist turned politician rather the politician turned manger of a state. Is it a sweet pill to erase the 2G spectrum form the people's memories? Only the DMK leader knows. One thing is clear that he does not want anyone in the state to be discontent when he assumes office as the sixth time CM or when he pass on the power to his son. He has a definite plan in his mind.

from:  R. Bhakther Solomon
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 11:45 IST

Rather than talking, let us campaign against these stupid and idiotic, lazy ideas. Let us create awareness within voters to think intelligently and vote for 49-0, than voting for any evil. By voting 49-0, we need to ask EC to reform 49-0 itself, to develop corruption free government. Visit my cause and Join my cause
http://www.causes.com/causes/589905-create-corruption-free-society-elections-in-india?recruiter_id=129659558

from:  Rajasekaran
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 10:08 IST

Free laptops seems to be a good idea among few other schemes. Atleast, this will impart knowledge on the younger generation which is a kind of return to the country in future. But, why should it be only to BCs? Whoever studies in government colleges is more likely economically weaker. So, it could have been to all students of government colleges. House calls to bedridden is appreciable. All other freebies are just open bribery and injustice to governance. It is time that the Election Commission start a debate on freebies by political parties as it tries to do on paid news.

from:  Sambandan S
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 07:13 IST

If the government would assure the public that the village officers, tahsildars, collectorate staff, revenue dept and police to abstain from taking bribe and take action on the complaints of common citizen promptly then the state will take a name. The freebees are only a cover up of corruption by ministers in appointment, transfer and promotion in police, transport, education and other govt. offices. In a corruption free government people would prosper without freebies. Both AIAdDMK, and DMK govt. when in power favour only its own men and the comman man has to depend on the services of a party man to get even the basic services. Again freebies are not given by their own money. Instead under this cover up commissions at various level benefit only the politicians and make the public expect more without any hard work. The treasury will be swindled. Transport is running under a 10000 crore loss. Nothing is done to correct this. Now free transport for senior citizens will make the buses crowded with only beggars and vagabonds.

from:  B.J.Jayabalan
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 06:13 IST

To win this Election, I wish parties come to senses.I will only vote for the parties doing the following: 1. Provide un-interrupted electricity supply (throughout Tamilnadu not just for cities) 2. Provide good roads and better public transport3. Clean water supply (at least once in 2 days) 4. No freebies (use the money for building better infrastructure.)

from:  Balaji
Posted on: Mar 20, 2011 at 03:32 IST
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