Chennai: Wondering if the Aavin milk should be subsidised for several prominent political personalities, who are among the consumers, Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam on Thursday justified the price hike saying it had helped to enhance milk procurement.
Moreover, the price was comparatively lower than that offered by the private players and cooperative societies in the neighbouring states, he said.
“Three litres of Aavin milk, each, is being supplied to (former chief minister) Mr Karunanidhi’s house and DMK floor leader M.K. Stalin, while 3.5 litres milk is being supplied to (former union minister) Dayanidhi Maran’s house, 1.5 litrer to (PMK leader) Anbumani Ramadoss’ house, 1 litres to (BJP state president) Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan, 3.5 litres to (MDMK chief) Vaiko and 1.5 litres to (TNCC president) E.V.K.S. Elangovan, and 2 litres to (CPI (M) Floor Leader) A. Soundararajan,” Mr Panneerselvam said elucidating that a large number among the affluent sections too consumed Aavin milk.
“Members should ponder if the government should subsidise such rich consumers,” he said and claimed that it would not be possible to distinguish the rich and poor consumers.
Keeping in mind the wellbeing of the poor and middle classes, the government had kept the price of Aavin milk lesser than that of the private players.
In fact, the price was lesser than the prevailing price of milk sold by the state cooperatives in Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat (at Rs 38 a litre).
Replying to a special call attention motion moved by the members of various political parties in the Assembly, the Chief Minister said the prices were hiked to provide fair procurement price for milk producers and to ensure that the milk was provided at affordable rates for the consumers.
The state-owned Aavin had been selling 22 lakh litres milk per day and other milk-based products like butter, ghee and ice creams.
Effective November 1, Aavin milk price was increased by Rs 10 taking it to 34 a litre.