‘Samacheer Kalvi,' power crisis also likely to figure in it
Governor Surjit Singh Barnala, who will deliver his first address to the 14th Assembly on Friday, will unveil the policies and programmes of the new AIADMK government and give details of how the government proposes to implement the promises made in the AIADMK election campaign.
Among the announcements expected are the government's plans for the sprawling new Assembly-cum-Secretariat complex at Omandurar government estate after shifting the Assembly and the Secretariat back to Fort St. George. Further, the address may shed light on the manner in which the government is going to review the uniform system of school education, or ‘Samacheer Kalvi,' which has been put on hold for now.
Replying to questions on her plans for the new Rs. 1,200-crore Assembly-cum-Secretariat complex on Anna Salai, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had earlier said one should wait for the Governor's address for an answer. While deciding to put on hold ‘Samacheer Kalvi' at its first Cabinet meeting, the new government had spoken of a review of the uniform system as in its present form it was not conducive to the maintenance of standards in school education.
The policy statement may also contain answers to questions about the continuance of the flagship schemes of the previous DMK regime, such as the health insurance scheme, covering advanced life-saving treatments and the mega housing scheme to convert all thatched roof houses into concrete units.
The AIADMK's manifesto contains promises concerning housing and distribution of home appliances such as mixers, grinders and ceiling fans, besides laptop computers for students. Modalities for implementing these promises are likely to be spelt out in the Governor's address
In terms of policy measures, Ms. Jayalalithaa has counselled patience until the Governor's address for answers to questions such as the government's plans for the Anna Universities of Technology, created by the previous regime as affiliating universities for engineering colleges across different regions of the State.
The financial position of the State, about which Ms. Jayalalithaa voiced concern in the past, given its high debt burden, is also likely to be spelt out in detail. Given the fact that the new regime's own social security expenditure and its food subsidy bill are likely to be fairly high, the focus would be on the steps it would take to ensure the State's financial health without cutting down on its welfare spending.
The power crisis in the State is also likely to figure in the Governor's address. The AIADMK government has promised a substantial augmentation in generation.