Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.K. Stalin announced a new welfare board for the Tamil people living abroad. The Chief Minister in a statement here on Wednesday said that the Tamil Nadu Non-Resident Welfare Act was enacted during the period of the previous DMK government on March 1, 2011. Stalin’s father Kalaignar Karunanidhi was the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu then.

He said that setting up of a welfare board for the Tamil diaspora was also announced then but the AIADMK government that assumed office after that did not take it forward.

The proposed Welfare board named, “Pulampeyar Thamizhar Nala Variyam” and he announced that January 12 would be celebrated as “World Tamils Day” and Tamil people living in several parts of the world would be brought together.

Pulampeyar is a Tamil word used in reference to emigration and emigrated people and Thamizhar Nala Variyam stands for the Welfare Board.

The state government, according to the Chief Minister’s statement, would constitute a benevolent fund of Rs 5 crore for non-resident Tamils.

An amount of Rs 20 crore would be earmarked for the Welfare board which includes Rs 8.10 crore for Welfare schemes, the statement said.

Dr Vijay Prabhakar, a Medical doctor from Tamil Nadu who lives and works in Chicago while speaking to IANS said, “This is a good decision and I welcome the steps taken by the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Thiru M.K. Stalin to constitute a welfare board for Tamil diaspora and January 12 as World Tamil Day.”