Jayalalithaa closes 500 liquor shops and cuts shop timings by two hours on Day 1

One of the first things that Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa did after taking oath for the sixth time was closing down of 500 shops belonging to Tamil Nadu State Marketing Corporation (Tasmac) and reduction in the timing of liquor shops by two hours.

Immediately after taking oath ac Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa also announced a Rs5,780-crore waiver of cooperative loans for farmers, 100 units of free power for all households, 8 gram gold free to brides under wedding assistance scheme and 200 units of  free power to handloom weavers and 750 units to power looms.

The 68-year-old Jayalalitha, who took oath as the chief minister of Tamil Nadu in Chennai along with 28 ministers today, after leading her party to a win for the fourth time in the Assembly elections, marked the first day in office.

Among the first to take included her trusted lieutenant O Pannerselvam who took the oath of office and secrecy in the name of God in Tamil that was administered by Governor K Rosaiah.

The AIADMK supremo retained 15 of her ministers who were in the previous cabinet and 13 new faces including three women.

Union ministers Venkaiah Naidu, Pon Radhakrishnan, Lok Sabha deputy speaker and senior AIADMK leader M Thambidurai and Jayalalithaa's aide Sasikala were seated in the front row.

She waived the cooperative crop loans, medium term and long term loans of small and tiny farmers as of 11 March 2016. This will mean an additional expense of Rs5,780 crore to the government.

She also signed an order that provides for free supply of 100 units of electricity to all households. This will mean an additional subsidy of Rs1,607 crore the state government will have to provide the state power utility.

Jayalalithaa signed an order to shut down 500 liquor retail outlets and brought down the working hours of the shops and attached bars to 12 pm to 10 pm. There are over 6,800 retail outlets for India-made foreign liquor, working from 10.00 am to 10.00 pm now.

The entire liquor trade in the state is now state-run and under these shops procure liquor from private manufacturers.

Under the wedding assistance scheme for the poor the government will now provide 8 g gold to the brides, apart from the ongoing cash assistance of Rs50,000 to brides with graduate degree or diploma and Rs25,000 for others. Previously, the scheme provided for 4g gold for making `mangalsutra'.

For handloom weavers, 200 units of free power and for powerlooms 750 units of free power will be provided, the government said.