Chennai, Feb 14 (IANS) The Tamil Nadu government will form a not-for-profit special purpose vehicle (SPV) that will tap the corporate social responsibility (CSR) contributions to finance and manage the Amma Unavagam/Canteen scheme, state Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam said on Friday.
Presenting the state budget for 2020-21, Panneerselvam who also look after the state finance portfolio, said that in order to fund the scheme on a sustainable basis and reduce the burden on the urban local bodies, a SPV will be formed to finance and manage the Amma Canteens.
“The SPV will raise Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) contributions from companies and other donations. The government will continue to provide subsidised food grains. The government will also provide grants to the SPV to cover the shortfall between the expenditure incurred and the revenue, contributions and donations received,” Panneerselvam said.
In the Budget Estimates 2020-21, a provision of Rs 100 crore has been made for this purpose.
Panneerselvam also said the focus on construction workers, who are the largest clientele of Amma Canteens, will be sharpened by establishing mobile units to transport food to work sites.
The Amma Canteen scheme was launched in 2013 to provide food at very affordable rates – one idli at Re 1, a plate of curd rice at Rs 3, a plate of sambar rice at Rs 5, and others – to the weaker sections of society.
The scheme is managed by urban local bodies.