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COVID-19: Rahul Gandhi hails govt, says Centre’s financial package is first step in right direction

NEW DELHI: Congress Member of Parliament Rahul Gandhi on Thursday (March 26, 2020) lauded the Narendra Modi government for announcing the Rs 1.7 lakh crore financial package to protect the weaker sections of the society from the economic fallout of deadly coronavirus COVID-19, which has claimed the lives of over 21,000 people across the globe. 

The Congress MP took to Twitter and said that says Centre’s announcement on financial package is the first step in right direction.

“The Govt announcement today of a financial assistance package, is the first step in the right direction. India owes a debt to its farmers, daily wage earners, labourers, women & the elderly who are bearing the brunt of the ongoing lockdown,” he tweeted.

The remarks from the Gandhi came shortly after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the massive economic stimulus to help poor tide over the crisis triggered by the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

Rahul’s party has been demanding an economic package in view of the coronavirus spread and the subsequent lockdown. On Thursday, party interim president Sonia Gandhi wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding the implementation of its proposed Nyay scheme and aid for the health workers.

Announcing the relief package, FM Nirmala 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 Rs 1,70,000-crore scheme, dubbed the “Prime Minister Gareeb Kalyan scheme” will “address the concerns of poor, migrant workers and those who need help”, she said. 

The FM also announced Rs 50 lakh per person insurance cover for doctors, paramedic and healthcare workers dealing with coronavirus outbreak. The PM Garib Kalyan Yojana will benefit migrant workers and rural poor and the women. The FM said the scheme will work via direct cash transfer, as one set of measures, while another set will include food security-related measures.

“We do not want anyone to remain hungry, so we will be giving enough to take care of their foodgrain requirement, protein requirement in terms of pulses,” the FM said as she announced the Rs 1.7 lakh crore relief. “On the other hand, they should also not remain without money in hand. So several measures through DBT are being taken so that money reaches them so that they can have money in their hands.”

Sitharaman also announced that doctors, paramedics, nurses, `Asha` workers, cleaning workers involved in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic and treating affected patients would be extended a medical insurance cover of Rs 50 lakh each.

Addressing the media here, Sitharaman said that the scheme will help 20 lakh health professionals and workers across the country, in case they want to avail of it.




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