Anganwadis in the State will soon become smoke-free as the State government plans to equip them with LPG connections, gas stoves and pressure cookers.
Making a suo motu statement in the Assembly on Monday, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Monday announced that over two lakh children in the age group of two to five attached to anganwadis in five districts would be given a pair of colourful dresses free of cost.
The anganwadis were serving 31 lakh people. Of the 54,439 anganwadi centres, 16,645 had already been provided with smokeless kitchens. Of the remaining 37,794 anganwadis, the government would spend Rs.3.20 crore to provide LPG connection, gas stove and a pressure cooker each for a smokeless environment.
To encourage children in the age group of two to five have a taste of pre-school, the government had decided to provide a pair of dresses free for 2.01 lakh children in the districts of Chennai, Vellore, Tiruchi, Theni and Dindigul as a pilot project at a cost of Rs.4.30 crore.
It had also ordered to provide four sets of uniforms (covering 46.85 lakh) for school children from this academic year.
As the Women Tailoring Industrial Co-operative Societies would not be in a position to stitch the required uniforms in time, the Chief Minister said that she would help them purchase 54,000 tailoring machines through the societies at a cost of Rs.54 crore. The amount would be granted as loans through central co-operative banks. The government would provide 10 per cent of the capital to enable the societies to obtain loans.
This would result in timely distribution of quality uniforms to school children and increase the income of the members of the co-operative societies, who could take orders from outside.