Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman stated on Monday that there is no need for a rapid stimulus in reaction to the Covid19 second surge as Budget announcements, including on expenditure, have yet to properly penetrate the economy after only two months of the financial year. FM already paid advance money to vaccine manufacturers up to July, which was previously set aside in the budget.
The Minister said things seem to happen and the government is constantly evaluating the situation, which changes from week to week, that’s why the government has yet to make a proper decision on the economic effects of the Covid-19 second wave. Sectors like hospitality, tourism, and contract-based industries have been impacted particularly hard. The government anticipates a temporary drop in GST receipts, with the mop-up, which is likely to increase once the economy reopens.
Sitharaman also addressed criticism of the government’s actions of the second surge and vaccine policy from the opposition, she added that the opposition should be consistent they are the ones who earlier raised doubts about the Indian vaccines and now they are making noise for the availability of Covid19 vaccines, they said “I will not take it, that is Modi’s vaccine, that is BJP’s vaccine” now they are saying “Oh! where is the vaccine?”.
She expresses her sorrow for the ones who have lost their lives in this second surge. she said the rate at which cases arose was difficult to foresee, resulting in a scarcity of facilities. She highlighted that programs like the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECGLS) and the Swamih Fund, which were established for the Atmanirbhar Bharat campaign, are still in action.