New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday addressed the second press conference on the economic package during the coronavirus crisis and said that the second tranche of the economic stimulus package will benefit migrant workers, street vendors and small farmers. Also Read - Coronavirus in Noida: 27 Fresh Cases Reported in a Day, Total Active Cases Now 209; 4-Year-Old Recovers
“Today’s initiatives will focus on migrant workers, street vendors, small traders, the self-employed and small farmers,” FM Sitharaman said. Also Read - COVID-19: Six-fold Jump in Cases, Five-fold Surge in Fatalities After a Month: Is Worst Yet to Come For India?
The FM said that over 3 crore marginal farmers have already availed Rs 4 lakh crore of loans on concessional rates. Also Read - No Shortage of Beds in Delhi, Clarifies Health Minister; 1,330 Fresh COVID-19 Cases in 24 Hrs, Total Tally Over 26,000
“The interest subvention and prompt repayment incentive on crop loans due from March 1 have been extended to May 31,” Sitharaman said.
She said that the Central government has allowed state governments to utilise SDRF for setting up shelters for migrants and providing them food and water. “We are conscious, we are attending to the migrants and giving them in various different ways,” Sitharaman said.
Sitharaman said that 12,000 self-help groups (SHGs) have produced more than 3 crore masks and 1.2 lakh litres of sanitizers during COVID-19 period. “Over 7,200 new SHGs for urban poor have been formed during the last two months,” Sitharaman said.
The Finance Minister said that the Centre has already generated 14.62 crore person-days of work till 13th May, which is 40-50% more persons enrolled as compared to last May. “Migrant workers are going back to their states being actively enrolled,” Sitharaman added.