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COVID-19 Lockdown : Poor people in distress, Economic Package layer far from problem solution : Delhi model of Rs. 5,000 to each poor person could mitigate Crisis in Tripura
TIWN March 29, 2020
COVID-19 Lockdown : Poor people in distress, Economic Package layer far from problem solution : Delhi model of Rs. 5,000 to each poor person could mitigate Crisis in Tripura
PHOTO : A milk seller in Agartala trying to sale milk. TIWN Pic March 29, 2020

AGARTALA / NEW DELHI, March 29 (TIWN): Amid massive contributions in Chief Minister’s relief funds, Tripura Govt has failed to announce yet any strong economic package yet which immediately could solve the problems of the poor. On Day-5, the crisis reports across state are coming out as amid ‘lathi-charge’ and ‘corona-virus’ disease fears, poor people are coming out of homes. Till now, Delhi, Kerala models have remained best for India with Delhi CM announced Rs. 5,000 allocation on immediate base with 2 times meals to each Delhi people. From rickshaw driver to milk sellers, all are coming out of home amid risks but no profit are seen. On being asked by media, maximum poor people said, no cash yet came to them and also various facilities which were promised yet to be started. Thus, it has become impossible for poor to spend days who live by daily wages, just like on Saturday TIWN reported how Goyala Basti people and animals are starving in lockdown. Opposition alleged, it is happening because Govt of India had no preparedness to fight COVID along with fighting the poverty of India.

Moreover, although state announced MGNREGA package for Tripura along with Tuep but around Rs. 73 crores of pending wages existing, yet to be cleared by Central Govt.

Delhi government on Friday transferred Rs 5,000 each to eight lakh beneficiaries under widow, differently-abled and elderly pension schemes while promising to transfer another Rs 5,000 in the first week of April to help them tide over the crisis emerging out of the spread of COVID-19 and the subsequent national lock-down.

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said the eight lakh beneficiaries include five lakh elderly, two lakh widows and one lakh disabled. He said another installment will be paid in the first week of next month.

He also appealed to migrant workers leaving Delhi to come back saying the government is arranging food for them. The Delhi government on Friday enhanced the capacity to serve two lakh people from 20,000 while it plans to double it to four lakhs from Saturday.

With the worldwide deadly Corona-Virus outbreak, which already claimed 12 lives in Union Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on yesterday had announced a slew of measures to deal with the economic distress caused due to the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent lockdown announced to deal with the situation.

The finance minister had already announced some measures on Tuesday that included extension of tax deadlines, easing minimum balance norms for savings account, and increasing threshold of insolvency filing to Rs one crore from Rs one lakh.Here's what the FM said:*PM Gareeb Kalyan Scheme will entail Rs 1.7 lakh crore. *It will include both cash transfer and food security. *Provide insurance cover worth Rs 50 lakh for sanitation workers, ASHA workers, doctors, nurses, paramedics in case they need it as they are on the frontlines of the corona battle. Direct cash transfer through DBT *Farmers: First instalment of Rs 2,000 of PM Kisan will be given in first week of April. 8.69 cr farmers will get immediate benefit out of it.

*MNREGA: Increase in wage rate from Rs 182 to Rs 202 amounting to increase of Rs 2000 per worker leading to benefitting 5 crore people. 

*Old age/widows: An additional ex-gratia amount of Rs 1,000 for next three months available in two instalments. It will benefit 3 crore widows and senior citizens.  *Women Jan Dhan account holders: Ex gratia of Rs 500 per month for next three months. This will benefit 20 crore women. 

*Women Ujjawala sheme beneficiaries: For three months, free cylinders. Will benefit 8.3 crore BPL families.  *Women Self Help Groups: Under the Deen Dayal National Livelihood Mission, collateral free loan will be given up to Rs 20 lakh from Rs 10 lakh earlier. Impact on 7 crore holders through 63 lakh SHGs.  *Organised sector: Government of India will pay the EPF contribution both of the employer and the employee put together 24% for next three months. This is for those establishments with up to 100 employees, 90% of them earning less than Rs 15,000.  *For organised sector, EPFO regulation will be amended so that workers can draw up to 75% for their contingency expenditure non-refundible advance or three months of wages in advance whichever is less. This will benefit 4.8 cr workers. 

*Construction workers: State government have been directed to use the welfare fund for building & construction labourers which has around Rs 31,000 crore to help those who are facing economic disruption because of the lockdown. 

*Utilise the funds available under the district mineral fund for testing activities, medical screening, providing health attention needed to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

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