Highlights: COVID-19 Relief Package Announcements Pt.2

FM Nirmala Sitharaman COVID-19 relief package

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman held a press conference on Thursday at 4 pm, to detail the second part of the Atmanirbhar (Self-reliance) package.

She unveiled 9 measures today – 3 for migrants, 1 loan within mudra, 1 for street vendors, 1 for housing, 1 for employment generation for tribal pockets, 2 for small farmers.

Here are the key takeaways from the press conference:

Support for migrants and urban poor during the last 2 months.

The government of India has permitted State Governments to utilize State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) for setting up a shelter for migrants and providing them food and water etc.

Central Government also released Hs 11002 crore of its contribution in advance to all States on 3rd April, to augment funds in their SDRF.

Hygienically prepared three meals a day provided for the residents of Shelters for Urban Homeless (5tH) during the lockdown, March 25, 2020.

12,000 SHGs have produced 3 crore masks and L20 lath liters of sanitizers. This gave additional employment opportunities to the urban poor.

Disbursal of Revolving Fund (RF) to Self Help Groups was on-boarded on PAISA Portal in April 2020 on a pilot basis in Gujarat and is now being rolled out across all the States in May 2020.

7,200 new Self Help Groups (SHGs) of urban poor have been formed during the period starting 15th March 2020.

1. Free food grain supply for migrants for next two months

This will be done through the NSFA/State card. 5 kg rice, 1kg chana/family for 2 months. Non-card holders also will get 5 kgs rice or wheat and 1 kg chana per family.

8 crore migrants to benefit from this and the Central govt will bear all the expenses. State govt will take the responsibility to implement the distribution.

Rs 3,500 crore will be spent on this intervention for 2 months.

2. National PDS ration card for any fair price shop across India – One nation one Ration card

By August 2020, 67 cr beneficiaries in 23 states which 83% of all PDS population to be covered by this card.

100% National portability will be achieved by March 2021.

The family, wherever they are and the migrant worker, wherever he is can be able to access and spilt the ration with the card and card number, in the local fair price shop.

States can provide cooked food for those migrant workers who are on the move or settled, said FM.

3. Affordable rental accommodation for migrant workers for migrant workers of urban poor in three steps

Migrant labor/urban poor face challenges in getting houses at an affordable rent. The government will launch a scheme under PMAY for migrant labor/urban poor to provide ease of living at affordable rent by:

i. Converting government-funded housing in the cities into Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHC) wider PPP mode through the concessionaire.

ii. Incentivizing manufacturing units, industries, institutions, associations to develop Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHC) on their private land and operate.

iii- Incentivizing State Government Agencies I Central Government Organizations on similar lines to develop Affordable Rental Housing Complexes (ARHC) and operate. Ministry will issue detailed guidelines.

4. Rs 1500 crore interest subvention for MUDRA-Shishu loans

Relief of Rs 1500 cr to MUDRA-Shishu loans. This provides a 2% interest subvention for those who have paid regularly and promptly Small businesses under MUDRA have been disrupted the most & have also impacted their capacity to pay EMIs.

Loan moratorium has already been granted by RBI. The current portfolio of MUDRA-Shishu loans is – Rs 1.62 Lakh crore (Maximum loan amount of 50,000. The government of India will provide an interest subvention of 2% for prompt payees for a period of 12 months.

5. Rs. 5000 a Special Credit Facility for Street Vendors

Adverse impact on the livelihoods of the street vendors due to COVID-19. The government will launch a special scheme within a month to facilitate easy access to credit to street vendors. Initial working capital up to Rs, 10,000.

Digital payments will be incentivized through monetary rewards and enhanced working capital credit would be made available for good repayment behavior. Will support nearly 50 lakh street vendors. Will provide liquidity of Rs. 5000 crores.

6. Rs. 70,000 crore boost to housing sector and middle income group through extension of CLSS

Credit Linked Subsidy Scheme for Middle-income Group (Annual Income: Rs 6-18 lakhs) was operationalized from May 2017. CLSS was extended up to 31st March 2020. The scheme has benefitted 3.3 Lakh middle-class families so far.

Government will extend the CLSS Scheme up to March 2021.

2.5 lakhs middle income families will benefit from 2020-21. Will lead to Investment of over Rs, 70,000 Crores in housing. Will create jobs, stimulate demand for steel, cement, transport, and other construction materials.

7. Rs 6000 crore employment push using CAMPA funds There is need to create job opportunities for our citizens

Compensatory Afforestation Management & Planning Authority (CAMPA) set up under the Compensatory Afforestation Fund Act, 2016. Plans worth Rs 6000 crores will be approved shortly.

Funds to be used by State Governments for – Afforestation and plantation works, including in urban areas Artificial regeneration; assisted natural regeneration Forest management; soil & moisture conservation works Forest protection forest and wildlife-related infrastructure development, wildlife protection, and management.

Will create Job opportunities in urban, semi-urban, and rural areas. Will create job opportunities for Tribals.

8. Rs 30,000 crores Additional Emergency Working Capital Funding for farmers through NABARD

Inadequate financial resources with Small and Marginal Farmers, as states said that rabi work harvests done. This is to meet post-harvest (Rabi) & current Khakif requirement in May/June. RRBs and Rural Cooperative banks are the main source of credit.

NABARD will extend additional refinance support of Es. 30,000 crore for crop loan requirement of Rural Co-op Banks & RRBs. This is over and above Rs 90,000 crore to be provided by NABARD through the normal refinance route during this year, now with an additional Rs 30,000 crore.

Front-loaded on-tap facility to 33 State Co-operative banks, 351 District Co-operative banks, and 43 RRBs available on tap based on their lending. To benefit around 3 crore farmers – mostly small and marginal farmers.

9.  Rs 2 lakh crore concessional credit boost to 2.5 croft fanners through Kisan Credit Cards

Special drive to be undertaken to provide concessional credit to PM-KISAN beneficiaries through Klan Credit Cards. As PM mentioned fisherman and animal husbandry will also be given access to KISAN credit card.

This will enable such fanners to gain access to institutional credit at the concessional interest rate. 2.5 crore farmers will be covered and will benefit from a credit flow of about Rs 2 lakh crores.

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