Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: The Chief Minister, M. Karunanidhi, on Thursday formally launched free distribution of bicycles to Standard XI students studying in government schools and government-aided schools also. He handed over bicycles to six boys and six girls at the Secretariat.

A press release said that it would benefit 5,58,867 students. The Chief Minister had sanctioned Rs.136.42 crore for the procurement of bicycles, according to the official release. Ministers Arcot N. Veeraswami, K.K.S.S.R. Ramachandran, Pongalur N. Palanisamy and Thangam Thennarasu, Chief Secretary K.S. Sripathi and Principal Secretary (Adi-Dravidar and Tribal Welfare) Vishwanath A. Shegaonkar were present.