The State government has recommended including Lambadis and the Narikuravas in the Scheduled Tribe (ST) list, Food Minister Mr. E.V. Velu said here on Sunday.

Participating at a series of function in Chengam Block coming under Tiruvannamalai District, which included distribution of free colour television sets at Kattamadu Panchayat, the Food Minister said the Lambadis and Narikuravas had put forth the demand to include them in the ST list. The State government had actively considered the demand and had sent in the recommendation to the Central government for consideration. The Government Order (GO) to include Lambadis and the Narikuravas in the ST list would soon be issued.

He said that in the DMK regime various development works was being implemented. One of the work for which tender had been issued was for the construction of a bridge between Ayodyapattanam and Kattamadu at a cost of Rs. 90 lakh. Similarly, the petition to increase the bus facility to Kattamadu was considered.

He said Tiruvannamalai District was leading in terms of issuing house pattas. Out of a total 6.56 lakh house pattas issued so far in Tamil Nadu, 43,000 house pattas had been issued in Tiruvannamalai District. Added to this, there were a total of 860 Panchayats in the District. Free colour television sets have been handed over in 650 Panchayats. For the current financial year alone 111 Panchayats have been covered. A total of 2.83 lakh of colour television sets have been handed over to various beneficiaries in Tiruvannamalai District.

Later the Minister inaugurated a part time ration shop at Vishnupuram coming under Pakkripalayam Panchayat.

Then participating at the World Elders Day function organised by Welfare Association for the Rural Mass (WARM), a non-government organisation at Muraiyar near Chengam, Mr. Velu said Tamil Nadu stood second in terms of the population of old people. This was because of the welfare scheme introduced by the State government to old people.

He said the old people should fit into the family. They should shed out their differences with the younger generation and should never feel inferior. The old should understand the present day situation and try to adjust with other family members for a happy living.

Stating that there were a total of eight crore oldpeople in India, Mr. Velu said it was the first time in any State the DMK Government under Chief Minister Mr. M. Karunanidhi had introduced Old Aged Pension Scheme. The Old Aged Pension had been increased from Rs. 200 to Rs. 400. For the Financial year 2010 Rs. 523 crores had been sanctioned for Old Aged Pension. Efforts were being put to cover an additional 10,000 people under the Scheme in Tiruvannamalai District by December this year.

District Collector Mr. M. Rajendran said Tiruvannamalai District stood fourth in terms of distribution of Old Aged Pension. In the District, pension was being given to 50,000 people.

Tiruvannamalai Constituency MP Mr. T. Venugopal, Chengam Constituency MLA Mr. Polur M. Varadan, Chengam Union Chairman Mr. G. Kumar and Tiruvannamalai MLA Mr. K. Pitchandi were among those who participated at various functions. At WARM, Ms. S. Shanthi, Secretary, welcomed the gathering. Mr. K. Rajavelu, Honorary Director, WARM, also spoke.

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