According to the GO, 6,810 folk artists who specialise in ‘Thavil’, ‘Nadaswaram’ and ‘Theru kuthu’ (Street theatre), who have newly enrolled in the welfare board would receive the special COVID-19 monetary care of Rs 2,000 per artist.
After the state imposed lockdown, folk artists completely lost their livelihood as all the temple festivals and local functions were banned. State government, twice in 2020, announced Rs 1,000 to folk artists registered with welfare board.
As artists not registered with the welfare boards were not included in the monetary aid announcement, a group of folk artists filed a case in Madras High Court pleading the Court to direct state government to give monetary aid to folk artists who were unregistered with the welfare boards and those who have applied through post, due to COVID-19 fear.
The High Court, on September 1, last year, directed the state government to issue monetary aid to the newly registered folk artists and based on the order, state government had allotted Rs 1.36 crore for the welfare of folk artists.