Former Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Raghuram Rajan said that he would assist India to deal with the economic stress due to coronavirus if asked for it. "The answer is a straightforward yes," Raghuram Rajan told NDTV. "If the virus spreads, as it has spread in Italy and the United States, we have to take it very seriously. What you see in these countries is a tremendous effect on public health, the overburdening of many hospitals and many deaths and of course, when that is happening economic activity is hard to carry on," he added.
The world is certainly in a deep recession, Raghuram Rajan also said, adding that the economy is expected to recover next year if adequate measures are taken to prevent a recurrence. "The first sign of difficulties in India often seems in foreign exchange. So far compared to other emerging markets our exchange rate has stayed quite stable, presumably from some support of the Reserve Bank of India. I should say we have depreciated some against the dollar, but you know countries like Brazil have gone down 25 per cent. We haven't been in that situation," professor at the University of Booth School of Business, added.
Several sectors in the country are severely affected due to the ongoing lockdown. Sectors like banks and manufacturing are under heavy stress and others such as aviation and related sectors have seen a large number of pay cuts and layoffs as people cancelled their travel plans due to lockdown. Only essential services including hospitals and fire services are allowed to be operational. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will today sit down in a meeting with chief ministers of states to discuss if the country needs to extend the lockdown. The Punjab, Odisha and Rajasthan governments have already declared that the lockdown will be extended beyond April 14 in their respective states.