Finance minister Nirmana Sitharaman on thursday announced an economic stimulus package worth Rs 1.70 lakh crore to help the nation's poor tackle the financial difficulties arising from Covid-19 outbreak. Sitharaman said the economic relief package will focus primarily on migrant labourers and daily wage labourers.
Sitharaman said "A package is ready for the poor who need immediate help like migrant workers and urban and rural poor. No one will go hungry. The package is worth Rs 1.7 lakh crore". The package includes a mix of food security and direct cash transfer benefits, which shield poor families during the lockdown. Under the Pradhan Mantri Gareeb kalyan Yojna (PMGKY) which is a part of the relief package, at least 80 crore poor people will be covered. Under the scheme, an additional five kilos of rice/wheat will be given along with 1-kilo pulse per household for a period of three months.
She also announced that there will be Rs 50 lakh insurance cover for each healthcare worker for three months, but this does not fall under PMGKY. nirmala sitharaman also announced direct cash transfers for a large number of affected people including senior citizens, widows, farmers and daily wage labourers. Wages under MNREGA will also be increased by Rs 2000 per worker on an average as additional income to help daily wage labourers. Sitharaman also announced that for the welfare of building and construction workers, the central government has passed orders to states to use funds worth Rs 31,000 crore to provide relief.