Prime Minister Narendra Modi met with Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday and reviewed the impact of Coronavirus pandemic on the economy, details of which have been accessed by the Republic Media Network. In the meeting between the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister, a second stimulus package was discussed to provide relief to those sectors which have been severely affected.
PM Modi also discussed the impact of the pandemic from small sectors to the aviation sector and also millions of jobs that have been affected. The meeting comes amid a drastic reduction in GDP growth forecast by various multilateral funding agencies for the current fiscal due to the impact of COVID-19 and the consequent lockdown. State of the economy was discussed in detail during the meeting, sources said, adding resource mobilisation for taking on the future challenges was also highlighted.
Previously, Rs 1.75 lakh crore package was introduced by the Central Government as a relief package. While announcing the first package, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the relief package includes direct benefit cash transfers, free LPG, grains, and pulses for the poor while the middle class would be able to withdraw funds from their Employees Provident Fund (EPF) account.
With 941 more COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, India's coronavirus tally crossed the 12,000 mark with the tally reading at 12,380 cases, said the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Thursday. Out of the total tally, 10,477 patients are active cases while 1,489 patients have been cured, discharged and migrated. With 37 more deaths reported in the last 24 hours, the death toll has risen to 414.
The government also constituted an empowered group - headed by Economic Affairs Secretary Atanu Chakraborty - which is entrusted with the task of suggesting measures that can bring back the economy back on track quickly post the lockdown.
PM Modi on Saturday, before officially announcing the extension of lockdown, had said that there seems to be a consensus among states on the extension of lockdown by another two weeks and said the motto of the government earlier was 'jaan hai to jahaan hai' but now is 'jaan bhi jahaan bhi'.
PM's thrust on 'jaan bhi and jahaan bhi' (life also, the world also), during his interaction with Chief Ministers through video conferencing, appeared to be an indication of some relaxation in restrictions and a possibility of a wider economic stimulus package.
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