Finally, TN CM Stalin announces cash gift for Pongal: Here's how much and who can avail it!

After series of criticisms and demands from the opposition parties and thousands of people, the MK Stalin-led Tamil Nadu government has on Friday - January 5 announced a cash gift for the impending Pongal festival. The announcement has come days after the government issued an official communique of providing a gift hamper without any cash incentive.

As Pongal festival is just ten days away and as the general elections are also approaching, the government has announced a cash gift in a move to subdue criticisms, which will make an impact in the polls. On Friday, the government announced that Rs 1,000 cash incentive will be provided to the people along with a gift hamper on the occasion of Pongal 2024. 

Pongal will be celebrated on January 15 and an official release, quoting the Chief Minister, said Rs 1,000 cash will be distributed through ration shops ahead of the festival to the ration cardholders as 'Pongal gift'. The cash will be provided along with a gift hamper of one kilogram of raw rice, one kilogram of sugar, one sugarcane, a dhoti, and a saree. 

However, not all ration cardholders can avail the benefit of cash incentive. The government has said that the people who hold rice cardholders alone will get Rs 1,000 cash gift and the amount will be credited to their official bank accounts before Pongal. The people who are State government and Central government employees and pensioners, the people who pay Income Tax, and the people who possess sugar and no-commodities ration card holders aren't eligible to avail this cash incentive. 

A release from the state government has further said that in a view of Pongal, the monthly rights grant of Rs 1,000 to women heads of families under the 'Kalaignar Magalir Urimai Thittam' will be distributed on January 10 to the bank accounts of 1.5 crore beneficiaries, including the newly added beneficiaries.