Just a few hours ago, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced an economic stimulus package worth Rs 1.70 lakh crore to tide over the impact of coronavirus. Ms Sitharaman said the relief package will focus mainly on migrant workers and daily wage laborers. “The government is working so that those impacted directly like migrant workers can be helped,” said Sitharaman.

“We don’t want anyone to remain hungry. The package is worth Rs 1.7 lakh crore via cash transfer and food subsidy.” She added that the Prime Minister Gareeb Kalyan scheme will help 1,70,00 crore migrants and poor people.

The step has been taken to help the nation’s poor and also to tackle the financial difficulties arising from the COVID-19 outbreak. The relief measures include direct cash transfers and food security-related steps to help the poor workers suffering from the 21-day countrywide lockdown that began this week. Take a look at the important points from what the Finance Minister said.

  • Under the Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojna (PMGKY) at least 80 crore poor people will be covered. An additional five kilos of rice/wheat will be given along with 1-kilo pulse per household for a period of three months.
  • There will be 50  lakh insurance cover for each healthcare worker who are  putting their own life at risk.
  • Under Kisan Samman Nidhi, 8.69 crore farmers will be immediately benefited through direct cash transfers. In the first week of April an installment of Rs. 2000 will be deposited to the accounts.
  • The  relief package will also cover 20 crore Jan Dhan women account holders with a compensation of Rs 500 per month for the next three months.
  • Under the Ujjwala scheme, all the BPL families will get free cylinders for three months.
  • An additional amount  of Rs. 1,000 will be provided to poor citizens, widows, disabled in two installments through  DBT.
  • For the organised sectors the government will pay EPF  contribution. Companies with up to 100 employees, government will contribute 12% on behalf of employers and employees each for the next three months. The salary of the employers must be less than Rs 15,000/month.Nearly 4 lakh organisations and 80 lakh employees will be benefited by the scheme.
  • Workers of the building and construction sector will also  get welfare. The central government has passed an order to states to use funds worth Rs 31,000 crore to provide relief,  says Ms Sitharaman. 

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