PM Modi meets FM Sitharaman for the second economic stimulus package

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi On Saturday, he held a series of meetings with key ministers, including Interior Minister Amit Shah and Finance Minister Nirmala, and officials from the economy ministries to reaffirm the second package for sectors affected by the closure to curb the spread of the coronavirus, sources said.

The prime minister held talks with Shah and Sitharaman and reportedly held follow-up meetings with ministers from key economic ministries such as Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs), the sources said.

The Ministry of Finance, which deferred the release of the monthly GST collection numbers on Friday, also plans to make a detailed presentation to the Prime Minister later in the day on the state of the economy and various initiatives it plans to take to stimulate Indian economy.

The prime minister already had meetings with different ministries, including civil aviation, labor and power on Friday. On Thursday, he had a detailed discussion with the ministries of commerce and MSMEs, among others, with the aim of attracting domestic and foreign investment and the reactivation of small companies in the country to accelerate the recovery process.

During these meetings, both the Minister of the Interior and the Minister of Finance were present.

To mitigate the difficulties facing the base of the pyramid, the government announced in late March a stimulus package of Rs 1.7 lakh crore that included free food grains and cooking gas for the poor and cash for poor women and the elderly .

Sources said the government is considering announcing a second dose of relief measures for the segment and a stimulus package for India Inc shortly.

The government first imposed a 21-day national blockade from March 25 and then extended it until May 3.

The blockade closed businesses, stopped air and rail travel, and restricted the movement of people and goods.

Beginning May 4, the government decided to ease certain restrictions, including opening industries for green and orange districts that have zero or low cases. The reduction of the restriction in specific districts is until May 17 with strict vigilance by the local administration.