Maharashtra cabinet nod to subsidised meal scheme

These outlets would operate between 12 pm to 2 pm. These outlets would be able to turn out a maximum of 500 meals. (Representational image)

The Maharashtra cabinet on Tuesday gave its approval for a subsidised meal scheme, which was mentioned by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray in the Assembly last week.

Named ‘Shiv Bhojan’, the meal, which will cost Rs 10, will consist of two chapatis, one vegetable, rice and dal. According to Food and Civil Supplies Department officials, there will be at least one outlet in every district headquarters to prepare and dispense the meal in the pilot phase of the scheme.

These outlets would operate between 12 pm to 2 pm. These outlets would be able to turn out a maximum of 500 meals.

The estimated expenditure to run the scheme on the pilot basis would be Rs 6.48 crore in first three months, said an official, adding that more outlets would be opened in other parts of the state depending on feedback.

The official further said that the government will invite interested parties for starting these outlets and has already laid down some criteria for those who may come forward to do so.

The scheme was one of Shiv Sena’s main poll planks, and is also part of the Common Minimum Programme prepared by the tripartite government also consisting the NCP and Congress.

However, the scheme had not been given a name in either document. Calling it ‘Shiv Bhojan’ indirectly links it to the Sena.

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