Crediting former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi for eradication of polio in the country, Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram said, thanks to the national pulse polio programme no case of the crippling disease had been reported in the last three years.
Inaugurating a special school for differently-abled children and vocational training centre at Dharmathupatti in this district, his native, he said Gandhi with whom he used to travel 'extensively' when he was the Prime Minister asked him why there so many polio cases in Tamil Nadu.
"I told him Polio cases were more in all states in the country. Then the Polio drops programme was started. Now Polio in the last three years had been eradicated," he said.
He also said people should see only if their baby was healthy and not if it was black or white. No polio cases had been reported in the last three years, he stressed.
The Finance Minister also lauded former chief minister and DMK President M.Karunanidhi for coining the word "differently abled persons" to refer to physically handicapped persons.
Praising the S K R Charities, which has set up the special school at his request, he said differently-abled persons had many talents and helping them was a big 'dharma' (virtuous act).
Earning money was not a problem there as were many businesses and industries to earn money. But spending them in a proper way was necessary.