Coronavirus impact: Centre announces Rs1.7 lakh crore package for poor

FM Nirmala Sitharaman

FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday announced an economic stimulus finalised to deal with impact of corona lockdown. "We are looking both at cash transfers as well as food security measures", Sitharaman said.

The Centre would also provide Rs 50 lac worth health insurance cover per health worker for three months.

Limit of collateral free lending would be increased from Rs 10 to Rs 20 lakhs.

This distribution will be done through Public Distribution Scheme (PDS). In addition, they will also get 1 kg of pulses of their choice for free.

Further, farmers will get the first installment of PM Kisan Yojana as front load of Rs 2,000.

This means that 8.69 crore farmers will get Rs 2,000 in April.

For this goal, the Government of India will spend Rs 31,000 crore. This will benefit 3.5 crore registered workers.

Sitharaman, earlier this week, had said a package is under works and will be announced.

Under PM Garib Kalyan Yojana, MNREGA wages would be increased by Rs 20 with effect from 1 April, 2020. It is expected to benefit eight crore poor families.

Approximately, Rs 5,600 Crores will be spent for this objective.

Poor widows, aged, and divyang: Ex-gratia transfer of Rs 1,000 for the next three months, in two instalments.

Beneficiaries of the Ujjwala scheme: 80 million households benefitted from the gas cylinders provided under the scheme.

It would cover 8.7 crore farmers and Rs 16000 crores would be distributed to them. For this, the government will be spending Rs 31,000 crore.

"The government has been working so that those affected due to the novel coronavirus since the lockdown commenced on the intervening night of 24-25 March, will be reached out".

Rs.13,000 crores would be provided for this goal.

This will benefit approximately 13.62 crore families. This scheme will be applicable for organisation with up to 100 employees, where 90 per cent of employees draw less than Rs 15,000 salary.

GOI will be spending Rs.5,000 crores for this goal.

The government will amend the provident fund scheme regulation to allow non-refundable advance of 75% from the fund for contingency expenditure or three months of wages, whichever is lower, she said. The government will regulate the provident fund scheme.

Construction workers: States will be asked to use welfare funds to help construction workers. Besides the poor, the scheme also keeps other marginalised sections of the society in mind - such as women, pensioners and the differently-abled.

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