CHENNAI: Chief Minister M K Stalin on Saturday inaugurated the scheme for providing annadhanam (free meal provided by temple to devotees) throughout the day at three more major temples in the state.
Stalin inaugurated the full-day annadhanam scheme implemented by the state HR and CE department in Arulmigu Ramanathasamy temple in Rameswaram, Arulmigu Arunachaleswarar temple in Tiruvannamalai and Arulmigu Meenakshi Sundareswarar temple in Madurai, through video conference from the state secretariat on Saturday morning.
The scheme has been extended to the three aforesaid temples in accordance with the announcement made in the State Assembly during the debate on the demand for grants for HR and CE department for the financial year 2022-23 earlier. As many as 8,000 devotees would benefit daily from the scheme's extension to the three temples, a release issued by the state government in connection with the inauguration said.
Initially, the state HR and CE department was only implementing the full-day annadhanam scheme at Aranganathasamy temple at Srirangam in Trichy and Arulmigu Dhandayuthapani temple at Palani in Dindigul besides providing annadhanam in the afternoon at 754 others temples in the state. As a part of the scheme's extension, on August 16, 2021, chief minister Stalin had inaugurated the full day annadhanam distribution at Arulmigu Subramanayaswamy temple in Tiruchendur, Arulmigu Mariamman temple in Samayapuram and Arulmigu Subramanyasamy temple in Tiruttani. Under the scheme, annadhanam would be distributed to devotees from 8am to 10pm.
The state government has obtained FSSAI (Food safety and standards authority of India) certification for 314 temples, including all majors temples in the state to ensure quality and hygiene in the prasadham and anandhanam produced by the temples. State HR and CE minister P K Sekarbabu, state chief secretary V Iraianbu and principal Secretary of the department P Chandramohan and HR and CE commissioner J Kumaragurubaran were present during the inauguration.