India will soon roll out additional measures and economic stimulus to assist the industry and help the poor overcome the financial fallout of coronavirus, said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday. Sitharaman said at the 101st meeting of the Development Committee Plenary of the World Bank that India would continue to ensure that supply of critical medicine to needy countries does not stop. She participated in the meeting through video conferencing.
The Finance Minister elaborated that support measures of Rs 1.70 lakh crore have been provided as welfare measures. These measures includes free health insurance to frontline health workers, free food and gas, cash transfers and additional security measures for affected workers.
Sitharaman also said during the meeting that statutory and regulatory compliance matters relating to income tax, GST, financial and corporate affairs have also been provided by the government to help companies cope with the sudden loss of economic opportunity.
"Government is working extensively with stakeholders to provide additional relief in the form of humanitarian aid and to provide economic stimulus in the coming days," she added.
Sitharaman reiterated that India could have been worse-affected by coronavirus given the size of the population but the government took no chances and launched massive efforts to curb the spread. Social distancing, travel restrictions, work from home in public and private sectors, increased testing, screening and treatment have helped contain the impact of the pandemic, she added.
"We are supplying critical medicines to the needy countries and will continue to do so if the situation demands," she said as India continues to provide hydroxychloroquine to other nations to fight coronavirus.