Inspired by Amma Unavagam, a subsidised food canteen started by Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa, the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon will soon introduce a similar scheme from mid-April, through which people can avail lunch starting at Rs. 20.
Under the scheme, the civic body would provide a meal at three price slabs Rs. 20, Rs. 25 and Rs. 30 to the urban poor. For Rs. 20, one would get rice and dal, for Rs.25 one can get five rotis and two vegetables, for Rs. 30 one can buy four rotis, rice, dal and vegetables.
According to a senior official, at least 20,000 people will be fed every day. Corporate houses would provide assistance for the scheme after being selected through a tender that will be issued next week. MCG officials said that they had approached some corporate houses with experience in handling food-related schemes that can undertake the project as a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative.
A senior official said that a designated site will also be finalised after the selection process concludes.
Joint commissioner Rohit Yadav said that the MCG would set up the necessary infrastructure and health inspectors will be assigned for checking the quality of food.
“Corporate houses will be assigned the job of distributing food to the poor. The cheap food scheme would be extended to other parts of the city subsequently, after reviewing the functioning of the pilot project,” said Yadav.
On Tuesday, Delhi’s finance minister Manish Sisodia’s budget had also made provisions for a subsidised food scheme (where people will be able to eat hygienic food at affordable rates) that will be implemented by a special organisation -- Bureau of Affordable Meals at an allocated budget of Rs. 10 crore annually.
The initiative was mooted since the city has a high wage-earner population. If successful, the project will be replicated at bus stands, railway stations, hospitals and other crowded area.