AP Cabinet revives Rs two/kg rice scheme

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Hyderabad, Oct 1 (UNI) The Andhra Pradesh Cabinet today decided to provide rice at Rs two per kg to those below the poverty line.

The Cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy took the decision to benefit 1.82 crore poor people with white ration cards, Information Minister A Narayana Reddy told reporters.

Taking the implementation of the welfare measure as a prestigious one, the Chief Minister asked the Civil Supplies Department to gear up the machinery for the gigantic task.

The Finance and Civil Supplies Departments were asked to work out the modalities including financial implication, frame guidelines and come back to the Cabinet in the next meeting or thereafter, he added.

At present rice was being sold at a subsidised rate of Rs 5.25 kg to the white card holders and at Rs three a kg to 15.58 lakh poor people under the 'Antodaya scheme'.

The Cabinet also approved a Rs 500 crore Chief Minister's package to augment the income of farmers by taking up allied activities including dairy development and fisheries, he informed, adding that the Council of Minsters agreed to provide Rs 100 crore towards Government contribution for the first phase Rs 8430 crore Krishnapatnam Thermal project to generate 1600 MW power.

The Cabinet ratified the action of the Municipal Administration Department to take a loan of Rs 310 crore from Japan Bank for International Cooperation to free of pollution the picturesque Hussainsagar lake and its catchment areas between 2006 and 2012 at a very low interest rate of 0.75 per cent and payback period of 40 years.

The Cabinet also decided to provide counterguarantee to the State Cooperative Bank for Rs 61.94 to pay back arrears to the cane growers for supplies made to nine cooperative sugar factories.

The Cabinet approved amendments to the Hyderabad Municipal Corporation Act and the AP Municipalities Act to make mandatory ''BIS/ISI certification'' for packaged drinking water/mineral water to prevent duping of public at large, he informed.

UNI

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