COVID-19 Package: FM Sitharaman Pledges Rs 1.7 Lakh Cr to the Poor

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman addressing the media on Thursday, 26 March, said, "We have come with a package which will take care of the welfare concerns of the poor, migrant workers and those who need immediate help."

The package will include Rs 50 lakh per person as insurance cover for doctors, paramedics and healthcare workers dealing with coronavirus outbreak, the FM said.

Under the ‘Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Ann Yojna’, 80 crore poor people will get, in addition to the already allotted 5 kg wheat/rice, 5 more kgs of rice/wheat and 1 kg preferred pulses every month for the next three months.

Earlier, on Tuesday, she had announced a slew of regulatory and compliance measures to alleviate the hardships being faced by various businesses ahead of the announcement of a nationwide lockdown.

Also Read: Govt’s Lockdown Rules: Dos, Don’ts & All Else You Need to Know

The FM had earlier said that an economic package is being readied and will be announced “sooner rather than later”.

The FM had earlier said stock market developments are being monitored closely.

She had also extended all key deadlines to 30 June 2020, including the deadline for filing Income Tax returns for FY 18-19, GST returns for the months of March, April and May, and Aadhaar-PAN linking.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his address to the nation on Tuesday, said that the entire country will be on lockdown for 21 days and appealed to every citizen to not step out of their houses for the duration.

Also Read: Health Ministry Pegs Total COVID-19 Cases at 649 in India

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