No big freebies in DMK manifesto, assures dry law, Lokayukta

World Sunday 10/April/2016 22:11 PM
By: Times News Service
No big freebies in DMK manifesto, assures dry law, Lokayukta

Chennai: DMK on Sunday promised total prohibition, setting up Lokayukta, a cut in state-run Aavin Milk price by Rs 7 a litre, revival of the Legislative Council, and implementation of the Sethusamudram project in its manifesto for the May 16 Assembly polls.
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) did not, however, announce any populist freebie schemes on the scale of free colour televisions it had made in 2006, though it promised a slew of concessions and waivers, catering to various sections of people.
It includes mobile phones for the poor at concessional prices, free wi-fi Internet for students, waiver on crop and educational loans, inclusion of free milk in nutritious meal scheme, and Rs 60,000 assistance to women for marriage.
DMK also promised improvisation in some ongoing schemes like marriage assistance plan. Currently, the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) government provides Rs50,000 assistance and gold for mangalsutra.
It assured 'Anna (on the name of DMK founder and former chief minister CN Annadurai) Unavagam," in the place of Amma Unavagam, a cost-effective chain of state-run canteens.
Releasing the manifesto, Karunanidhi attacked AIADMK chief and Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa over her promise of implementing prohibition in a phase manner and dismissed it as "deceitful".
He said the state-run liquor outlet - TASMAC - employees will be provided alternative employment.
He said Tamil will be introduced as "co-official language" in central government offices too in Tamil Nadu. He promised waiver of crop loan for small and micro farmers, and a separate budget for agriculture. A separate farm budget is a pet theme of the Pattali Makkal KatchPattali Makkal Katchi (PMK).
DMK also promised waiver of educational loans for students. The 100-day employment scheme will be extended by 50 more days, the manifesto said.
DMK also promised uninterrupted power supply, desalination plants in coastal districts, satellite town at Vandalur near here and nine month maternity leave for government employees. He said a separate minister will take care of water resources management.
"We need a minister to prevent flooding in Chennai," he said. He promised 200 check dams at a cost of Rs 2000 crore to help prevent flooding. Water bodies like lakes will be desilted at an estimated cost of Rs10,000 crore, he said.