Chennai, Feb 24: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday launched the Tamil Nadu government’s Amma Scooter Scheme to mark the 70th birth anniversary of late CM J Jayalalithaa. Under the scheme over one lakh working women are likely to get scooters at subsidised rates.
Amma Scooter Scheme allows only one woman member of a family whose annual income is Rs 2.lakh per annum is eligle. This woman member will get 50% subsidy subject to a limit of Rs 25,000 for buying a scooter of 125cc capacity or less.
Wooing the people of Tamil Nadu particularly women, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the state got higher funds allocations and projects with huge investments under his National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government. However in his about 15 minute speech, he avoided any reference to the strong demand from state parties for setting up of a Cauvery Management Board, as directed by the Supreme Court to which Chief Minister K. Palaniswami made a reference in his welcome address at a function here.
He also planted a tree sapling and inaugurated the plan to plant 70 lakh tree saplings as a part of Jayalalithaa birth anniversary celebrations in the state. Beginning his speech in Tamil saying that he is proud to stand on the soil of great poet and freedom fighter Mahakavi Subramania Bharathi, Modi said he bows his head to Tamil culture and language. Noting that around 9.5 lakh women in Tamil Nadu benefitted out of the Central government's free cooking gas scheme, he said that over Rs 24,000 crore worth of projects are implemented by the central government in Tamil Nadu after BJP came to power at the centre. The Central government has sanctioned Rs 3,700 crore for the Chennai Metro Rail project, he said. Taking a dig at the earlier Congress-led government at the centre, Modi said under the previous regime, Tamil Nadu got just Rs 81,000 crore under the 13th Finance Commission whereas under NDA regime, the state got around Rs 180,000 crore under the 14th Finance Commission allocation. According to him, Tamil Nadu got Rs 700 crore during 2016-17 and Rs 200 crore during 2017-18 under the rural housing scheme, while for urban housing, over Rs 6,000 crore has been given to the state. He also added that around Rs 2,600 crore has been given under the crop insurance scheme. Referring to the long coastline, Modi said the central government has given Rs 100 crore to Tamil Nadu for converting 750 fishing boats to long-liners for deep sea fishing. Underlining the importance of woman in a family and society, he said empowering a woman is empowering a whole family. He said around Rs 416,000 crore has been given under the Mudra loan scheme of which 70 per cent is for women. Modi said the women of India are coming out of their age old shackles and seeking self- employment. Palaniswami utilised the presence of Modi on the dais and requested him to take necessary steps to set up the Cauvery Management Board and Cauvery Water Regulation Committee as per the apex court's order in the Cauvery river water dispute case. Welcoming the gathering, Deputy Chief Minister O.Panneerselvam said the state government continues to follow the footsteps of Jayalalithaa. Earlier Modi was received at the Chennai airport by Governor Banwarilal Purohit, Palaniswami and Panneerselvam. From the airport he went to naval base INS Adyar by a helicopter and from there he went by road to Kalaivanar Arangam where the function was held. A large number of people had gathered on the pavement along Modi's route to Kalaivanar Arangam and greeted him.