Anna Canteen: The Andhra Pradesh government is still in the 1st gear concerning setting up of the Anna NTR canteens though the State Cabinet had approved the proposal in 2014. The State government opened only one “Anna canteen” that too at Velagapudi near the Interim Government Complex (IGC) in June. Two years back in 2014, it announced that 10 centers would be opened in Guntur, 15 in Visakhapatnam and 5 each in Anantapur and Tirupati in phase- I.
Anna Canteens: Two years on, govt. yet to go beyond 1st one
On the basis of news, fact remains that the govt officials are still observing different types of models to roll out more canteens. There is no consensus on the food items to dish out to the people.
In the view of State Government there is a proposal to serve lunch with all variety dishes such as curry, chutney and sambar, the officials refute it saying different types of rice – sambar rice, tamarind rice and curd rice – could be served. The Group of Ministers(GoM) is now also mulling over a proposal to serve region-specific food. The officials would have to study the food preferences of the people.
It takes the issue back to square one and a GoM on ‘Anna canteens’, subsequently, has decided to study the models in Telangana and Tamil Nadu again.
A high-powered delegation headed by Civil Supplies Minister Paritala Sunitha already visited Chennai along with a team in 2014 to study how these canteens, taken up by the Jayalalithaa Government in Tamil Nadu, function. The delegation studied whether these could be replicated in AP. The officials also studied the model followed in Telangana.
AP Anna Canteens Subsidized
The AP government had planned to initially provide subsidized food to around 1 lakh people through Anna Canteens. For this more canteens required the officials are now scouting for places which are labour intensive saying the government’s target was to reach out to the labourers.
“We are planning to start 100 canteens in places such as Visakhapatnam, Nellimara, Rajam, Tirupati, Srikakulam, Anantapur, Hindupur, Kurnool and Kakinada shortly,” says Ms. Sunitha. The AP government also further plans to serve region-specific food. A proposal to provide full meals is also on the cards. We are exploring all the options, she adds.
Anna Canteen Menu
The Anna NTR Canteens are modeled on the lines of the Amma Canteens that gained huge famous in Tamil Nadu.
|Pongal (200 grams)||5 Rupees|
|Tomato Bath (200 grams)||5 Rupees|
|Sambar Rice (200 grams)||5 Rupees|
|Tamarind Rice (200 grams)||5 Rupees|
|Vegetable Rice (200 grams)||5 Rupees|
|Curd Rice (150 grams)||3 Rupees|
The Civil Supplies Minister says there is a prior response to the Velagapudi canteen. Not less than 700 people visit the Anna canteen every day. About 500 people have meals there. The government is providing a subsidy of Rs. 4.38 lakh as against the expenditure of Rs. 7 lakh per month, she explains.
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