The ruling AIADMK's flagship Amma Canteens will provide free food for 12 days from Friday onwards in Chennai and three neighbouring districts where the lockdown curbs are being tightened to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Chief Minister K Palaniswami said.
Food will also be provided through community kitchens and home delivered to select sections of the population, he said in a statement on Thursday.
Mr Palaniswami had on Monday declared that areas falling under Chennai, Tiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpet districts and under the city police jurisdiction, where the surge in COVID-19 cases remains unabated, will revert to stringent lockdown sans several relaxations from June 19 to June 30.
The four districts have the highest concentration of coronavirus cases in the state, which has so far reported over 50,000 infections.
On Thursday, E Palainiswami said that Amma Canteens, a pet scheme of late Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and run by local bodies, had given free food during the lockdown period till May 31 and announced its extension during the coming phase.
The curbs will kick in from the midnight Thursday, he added.
The functioning of community kitchens, which are at present supplying food free of cost to the needy, will be scaled up and they would home deliver meals to the senior citizens, besides to care homes, he said.
This arrangement will be in place till June 30, the Chief Minister added.