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Free hampers given under the watchful eyes of police

Special Correspondent
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To prevent overcrowding:Policemen deployed at the ration shops in the city on Friday.— Photo: S. James
To prevent overcrowding:Policemen deployed at the ration shops in the city on Friday.— Photo: S. James

Pongal gift hampers were distributed to card holders through various ration shops in the city and rural pockets on Friday. Of the 272 shops, 72 were identified as vulnerable due to over-crowding. Additional police strength was deployed to prevent any untoward incidents, a senior police officer said.

The State government had announced the distribution of the gift hamper ahead of Pongal celebrations across the State.

Along with a pongal gift hamper, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had announced the issuance of 1 kilogram of raw rice, 1 kilogram of sugar and a cash gift of Rs 100.

Madurai District Collector Anshul Mishra reviewed the distribution of the goods to all eligible card holders at a meeting with District Supply Officer S. Rajendran and Civil Supplies officials.

According to the officials, on Friday, 56 per cent of card holders were given the Pongal gifts comprising 4.38 lakh hampers through the 1,350 ration shops in the city and peripheries.

There are 7.81 lakh card holders.

The balance card holders who could not collect the gift hampers on day one, could get it on Saturday, officials added.

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