Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharama on 26 March 2020 announced the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Scheme, under which the government would provide a relief package of Rs 1.7 trillion to the underprivileged, poor and migrant workers affected by a lockdown amid the Covid-19 crisis. The FM also stated that workers like nurses, paramedics and sanitation staff, who were on the frontline of the war against the virus, would be provided a medical insurance cover of Rs 50 lakh per person.
- Prime Minister Gareeb Kalyan scheme to have two parts — cash transfer and food security
- Covid-19 package to take care of the welfare concerns of the poor and migrant workers who have been suffering because of a nationwide lockdown
- Insurance cover for healthcare workers attending to Covid-19 patients: Rs 50 lakh per person
- Two million health workers to benefit from the insurance scheme
Pradjhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Anna Yojana
- 800 million poor people in the country to get 5 kg of rice/wheat per month free of cost, in addition to the 5 kg they already get.
- Additionally, each household to get 1 kg of preferred dal for free for the next three months
Cash transfer scheme: Nine sub-parts :-
- Farmers: First instalment of the PM-KISAN payment of Rs 2,000 to be frontloaded; move to benefit 87 million
- MGNREGS: Wage increased from Rs 182 to Rs 202 per day. Wage increase to benefit 50 million families, as there will be about 2000 increase in their income. Poor widows, aged, and divyang: Ex-gratia of Rs 1,000 for the next three months, in two instalments. 30 million people to benefit. transfers to be done through direct benefits transfer (DBT)
- Women with Jan Dhan Yojana accounts: 200 million to benefit from Rs 500 ex-gratia for the next 3 months
- Beneficiaries of the Ujjwala scheme: 80 million households benefitted from the gas cylinders provided under the scheme. These beneficiaries will get free cylinders for three months in view of the disruption the coronavirus lockdown will cause.
- Women in self-help groups: 6.3 million SHGs get up to Rs 10 lakh collateral-free loans under the Deen Dayal Upadhyaya National Rural Mission scheme. The cap has been doubled to Rs 20 lakh. The move will benefit 70 million households
- Organised sector workers: Two parts to this. First, the Government of India will pay the EPF contribution of both employee and employer for the next three months. This will be for all those establishments which have up to 100 employees, 90 percent of whom earn less than Rs 15,000 a month
- And second, in what will benefit 8 million employees and 400,000 establishments, the EPFO regulation will be amended to allow the withdrawal of up to 75 per cent of their corpus as non-refundable advance, or three months’ salary, whichever is less
- Construction workers: States to be directed to utilise the Rs 31,000 crore welfare fund for building and construction workers for the benefit of 35 million workers in the midst of the coronavirus crisis
- District mineral fund: State govts to be urged to utilise this fund for medical screening, medical testing and providing health care services in the wake of the coronavirus crisis
Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojna
- Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojna is a economic help package announced by the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for the 80 crore poor people across the country for next three months.
- 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,” said finance minister.
- Poor senior citizens, widow and disabled will get an ex-gratia of Rs 1,000. Also, the daily wage under MNREGA has been increased to Rs 202 a day from Rs 182 to benefit 5 crore workers.
- The govt will front-load Rs 2,000 payment to farmers in the first week of April under the existing PM Kishan Yojana to benefit 8.69 crore farmers. The beneficiaries of Ujjwala LPG scheme will get free cooking gas for the next three months.
- The Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojna was announced in view of nationwide lockdown amid spread of coronavirus.
- The total number of COVID-19 cases in India has risen to 649, including 593 active cases and 42 people who have been cured or discharged from hospitals.