In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Tripura government will provide free Vitamin-C rich pineapple and lemon juice to boost people's immunity.
The initiative is part of the state government's 'Mukhya Mantri Corona Pratirodhak Abhiyan (Chief Minister Public Immunity Campaign against Corona) through which the fruits will be distributed to people of urban areas from July 4 for a month. It will be distributed every Saturday from 12 pm to 4 pm at 25 local urban bodies and sub-divisional offices.
The Vitamin-C rich pineapple and lemon are extensively grown in the state. Tripura is also famous for the finest qualities of 'Kew' and 'Queen' pineapples in the world.
"The state government will start distributing Vitamin-C enriched fruits especially pineapple and lemon from July 04. These fruits have been bought directly from the farmers so that they could also get benefits. The scheme will be monitored by the National Urban Livelihood Mission at grassroots level," Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb said.
The juice will be distributed by the Self-Help Groups (SHG) under the Deendayal Antodaya Yojana - National Urban Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NULM). The SHGs will directly purchase fruits from the farmers and each SHG will be allowed to distribute a maximum of 200 pineapples and 400 lemons (in juice form) in a week in one ward.
"Pineapple and lemon are rich in Vitamin C and have the potential to enhance immunity. Our target will be to take this scheme to the large population to boost their immunity," the CM said.
The Urban Development and Rural Development Department will monitor the scheme. It is expected to incur an expenditure of Rs 1 crore for a month.