New Delhi: Noting that the economic impact of the pandemic has been as disastrous as its health impact, President Ram Nath Kovind has said that the government has been concerned about the lower middle classes, the poor and MSMEs.
Addressing the nation on the eve of India’s 75th Independence Day, the President said that the government had been sensitive to the needs of the labourers and of employers in the wake of the pandemic and taken a series of relief measures last year.
“This year also, the government had distributed food grains to about 80 crore people in May and June. This benefit has been extended till Diwali. Moreover, the government has announced a new stimulus package worth Rupees 6 lakh 28 thousand crore to boost the selected Covid-affected sectors,” Kovind said.
He noted that an amount of Rs 23,220 crore is being spent over one year for expansion of medical facilities.
This is the second year when Independence Day is being celebrated in the midst of pandemic which has ravaged the economy resulting into loss of millions of jobs and the average income of people badly hit.
While the country has come out of the second wave of the Corona virus pandemic there is looming fear of another wave. In order to protect livelihood and ensure the economy is back on high-growth trajectory, the government has taken several economic measures including announcement of new schemes.
It has laid emphasis on Atma Nirbhar Bharat (a self-reliant India) to boost local manufacturing and reduce the country’s import dependence.
The President stated that the government has further opened up defence, health, civil aviation, power and other sectors with abiding faith in the inherent capacity of the economy.
“The government’s new initiatives to promote eco-friendly, renewable sources of energy, particularly solar power, have won praise around the world. If there is an improvement in the ease of doing business, it has a positive impact on the ease of living for all,” he said.
In addition to these, the President noted, special emphasis is being given to public welfare.
“For example, the dream of having a home of one’s own is being realised, thanks to the Rs 70,000 crore credit-linked subsidy scheme. The series of agricultural marketing reforms will empower our ‘annadata’ farmers and help them get better prices for their produce. These are some of the measures the government has taken to unleash the potential of every Indian,” he said.