Chennai: Tamil Nadu chief minister K Palaniswami on Thursday announced in the Assembly that 64,583 sanitary personnel employed by urban and rural civic bodies in the state will from now on be called 'cleanliness workers' to honour their work.
Making a statement, Palaniswami hailed the role played by them in maintaining public health and said the government has already been implementing several welfare measures like building residential tenements for their benefit.
Periodic health check-ups, special employment camps and skill development for the children of health workers were also being carried out, he said.
"To honour the work of these personnel and in deference to their long-time demand, all sanitary workers will from now be called as cleanliness workers (Thooimai paniyalargal in Tamil)," the chief minister said.
As many as 64,583 sanitary workers are employed with 15 corporations, 121 municipalities, 528 town panchayats and 12,525 village panchayats, he said.
The chief minister, while making announcements on the energy department, said a scheme to install smart meters for 42 lakh electricity consumers here to compute their power consumption will be implemented at an outlay of Rs 4,300 crore.
He said the initiative, aimed at providing enhanced services to power users and at the same time to cut down on technical and commercial losses and scale up revenue, will be implemented in the state capital in the first phase.
"This scheme will be implemented in other districts of the state in a staggered manner," he told the House.
He also announced other schemes to develop the power distribution infrastructure to meet the increasing demand at an estimated total cost of Rs 1,998 crore.
Such plans include upgradation of a 230 KV (Kilovolt) sub-station at Alagarkoil in Madurai district into a 400 KV station and enhancing two 110 KV sub-stations into 230 KV facilities.
To ensure uninterrupted power supply in coastal districts including Kanchipuram and Kanyakumari during times of natural calamities, electricity distribution overhead lines stretching to about 200 kilometers will be converted into underground cables, he noted.
Palaniswami also announced schemes for other departments including municipal administration....