K. Shanmugam, Chief Secretary, Tamil Nadu
The State government’s top priority for 2021 is to revive the economy. We will implement select infrastructure projects; the Finance City project, the integrated tourism project and the Chennai car parking project, among others, will be prioritised.
Detailed project reports for these are almost ready for launch in the coming year. Preliminary works for the Chennai greenfield airport project are in progress; so is the expansion of airports in Coimbatore, Madurai and Thoothukudi.
Road projects will be implemented through budget allocations. Irrigation projects are being carried out through tie ups with NABARD, under the NABARD Infrastructure Development Assistance. This is over and above the Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF). They can go up to ₹10,000 crore.
Focus will also be on industrial development through investments in new areas like electronics, defence, electrical vehicles and pharmaceuticals. Infrastructure projects are designed as public-private partnership projects. We are back to almost normal in tax collection.
Investment teams under the Guidance Bureau are working to give a big push to skill building and making the employment portal effective. The health and education sectors, too, will be strengthened.
Agriculture, water conservation and projects like lower Bhavani modernisation, the Grand Anaicut canal, Cauvery-Gundar link and many others will come up for implementation.
Our focus on the welfare of the people will continue. Our big challenge will be to overcome the setback caused by COVID-19 on educational institutions. We will continue to fight the pandemic. The vaccine cover for COVID-19 will be implemented in phases.