In a televised address to the nation on the night of Tuesday the 12th of May, India’s Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi spoke of kick starting a simultaneous process of revival aimed at the COVID-stalled economy and making India self-reliant through a massive infusion of Rs 20 lakh crore COVID stimulus package accounting for 10% of India’s GDP.
The PM spoke of various other issues and following are the highlight of his televised address:
- The stimulus package is comparable to a host of relief packages announced by many other countries. India’s package is the fifth largest among G20 countries in terms of percentage to GDP following Japan at 21.1%, the United States at 13.3%, Australia at 10.8%, Germany at 10.7% and India at 10%
- In his trademark style, the PM coined a name ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyaan’ for the process
- The package includes the earlier packages announced by the government
- The details of the package would be announced by the Finance Minister on 13th May
- The PM would unleash bold reforms in areas such as rational tax system, supply chain for agriculture, capable human resources, simple and clear laws, and a strong financial system
- The PM said reforms will attract investments, further strengthen ‘Make in India’ and promote business
- The package will focus on land, labour, liquidity and laws, cottage industries, the working class, micro, small & medium enterprises (MSMEs), middle class and industry, among others
- The package will address both the organised and unorganized sectors aiming to empower the poor, migrant workers and labourers
- The package aims to ensure quality and increase efficiency
Additional Reads – Updates from Finance Minister Press Conference on COVID-19 Relief Package
The PM explained the contours of his concept of self-reliant India to be supported by five pillars — the economy, infrastructure, system, democracy and demand. The PM expounded as follows:
Economy – The PM desired a quantum jump rather than incremental increases in economic growth.
Infrastructure – The PM wants India to be identified by its excellent infrastructure
System – The PM insists that India’s system should be technology based and it should realize India’s dreams of 21st century.
Democracy – The PM believes that as the largest democracy in the world, our vibrant demography should become the source of energy for our efforts towards attaining self reliance.
Demand – The PM considers India’s cycle of demand and supply as an asset. He exhorted the country to utilize the power of demand fully.
The PM clarified that self-reliance did not mean being self-centred.
The PM highlighted the importance of local manufacturing, local markets and local supply chains. He said that COVID-19 taught India the importance of being local. He said, “All our demands during the crisis were met locally. Now, it is time to be ‘vocal about local’ products and help them become global.”
In conclusion, the PM reiterated his oft repeated maxim that Indian culture considers the world as one family and any progress India makes is a progress of the world. He believes that the world considers India as a major contributor to the development of humanity itself.