Sixteen more samathuvapurams will be opened in Tamil Nadu before the end of December, said M.K. Stalin, Deputy Chief Minister, at Tiruvonam near here on Friday.

He inaugurated the Periyar Memorial Samathuvapuram at Thoppuviduthi in Tiruvonam panchayat union. He said 13 samathuvapurams have already been opened in the State this year. The first samathuvapuram during this year was opened by the Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi at Tiruchi and the second one by the State Finance Minister, Anbazhagan. The rest of the 11 samathuvapurams were inaugurated by him.

Mr. Stalin also distributed a revolving fund to 1,000 women self-help groups at a meeting held at Tiruvonam.

He said that Tamil Nadu stood first with respect to the activities of women SHGs. That was why out of a total loan amount of Rs. 11,132 crore given by the banks at the all India level during 2008-09, Rs. 2,174 crore had come to Tamil Nadu. This worked out to 20 per cent. Similarly the Indian Bank which gave Rs. 1,864 crore throughout the country, allotted a lion’s share of Rs. 1,150 crore to Tamil Nadu, that worked to 62 per cent. Indian Overseas Bank had given 48 per cent of its total loan to Tamil Nadu.

This is mainly because of the impressive 99 per cent recovery rate displayed by the State.

Referring to the distribution of free colour televisions, Mr. Stalin said TVs will be distributed to all the households in Tamil Nadu before the end of 2010.

S.S. Palani Manickam, Union Minister of State for Finance, Ko. Si. Mani, S.N.M. Ubayathullah, State Ministers, M.S. Shanmugam, Collector, participated in the meetings.