PM Modi Announces Rs20 lakh Crore Economic Package To Build a Self-reliant India; Lockdown 4 To Have New Rules
Indian prime minister (PM) Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced a whopping Rs20 trillion (Rs20 lakh crore) package to build a self-reliant India and to overcome the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. "Considering the packages announced by the government, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI)'s announcements and the package being announced today, it will come to a total of Rs20 lakh crore rupees, to support our people," the PM says.
Talking about the fourth phase of the lock-down, the prime minister says, "Lockdown 4 will be different and have new rules. We have been receiving proposals from several states, and would announce the details on lockdown on before 18 May 2020."
In his televised address, the PM says, "India's self-reliance will be based on five pillars—economy, which makes quantum jumps rather than incremental change, modern infrastructure, tech-driven system to fulfill 21st century dreams, world's vibrant demography and demand. This special economic package is for our labourers, farmers, honest taxpayers, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and cottage industry."
During the crisis, it is the 'local' which has saved us, the PM said, adding, "Thinking local is not just our necessity, but a responsibility too. We want to make it our life mantra. Even those which appear to be global brands were local once."
"When the crisis started then not even a single personal protection equipment (PPE) kit was manufactured in India, only a few N95 masks were available.
Today two Lakh PPE kits and two Lakh N95 masks are manufactured in India on daily basis," he says.
According to the prime minister, India's medicines give a new hope to the world, during this time of crisis. He says, "The world is coming to believe that India can do very well, that it can contribute in a significant way to humanity. The definition of self-reliance is changing in the global world. India's thought process and culture gives hope, we talk of our self-reliance which is founded on the world as one family."
Earlier in his speech, PM Modi said that more than 4.2 million people from different countries have been infected by COVID-19, more than 0.27 lakh people have lost their lives due to the virus.
"Many Indians have lost their loved ones, my condolences to them. Crores of lives in the world were in peril. It was unimaginable for the human race. But being tired, losing and breaking spirit is not acceptable to mankind. We have to save ourselves and move forward," he says.
The PM said, "We have been hearing that the 21st century is India's. We got the opportunity to understand world situation in detail. It is now not only our dream, but also our responsibility, to make 21st century India's."
Prime minister Modi on 24th March had declared a 21-day country-wide lockdown for the first time to break the chain of transmission of the novel coronavirus pandemic. On 14th April, it was extended till 3 May 2020. Just two days before this, the ministry of home affairs (MHA) in an order extended the third phase of lock-down for two more weeks. The third phase of lockdown would have continued till 17th May.
In a statement, MHA had said, "After a comprehensive review and in view of the lockdown measures having led to significant gains in the COVID-19 situation in the country, the MHA, issued an order under the Disaster Management Act, to further extend the lockdown for a further period of two weeks beyond 4 May 2020."
The ministry had also issued new guidelines to regulate different activities in this period, based on the risk profiling of the districts of the country into red (hotspot), green and orange zones.
Green zones are districts with either zero confirmed cases till date or no confirmed cases over the past 21 days. The classification of districts as red zones will take into account, total number of active cases, doubling rate of confirmed cases, extent of testing and surveillance feedback for the districts, the ministry says.
Districts, which are neither classified as red zone or green zone will be classified as orange zone.