On Tuesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation and announced further relief to save the country's economy amid the COVID-19 crisis.
This stimulus package, dubbed as the 'Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan', which includes previously announced measure adds up to Rs 20 lakh crore and is estimated to be roughly 10 percent of India's GDP (gross domestic product), making it among the most substantial in the world after the financial packages announced by the US, which is 13 percent of its GDP, by Japan, which is over 21 percent of its GDP, Sweden (12 percent of GDP) and Germany (10.7 percent of GDP).
"A special economic package is being announced to make India self-reliant," Modi said in his third address to the nation over COVID-19 pandemic. "This package, taken together with earlier announcements by the government during COVID crisis and decisions taken by RBI, is to the tune of Rs 20 lakh crore, which is equivalent to almost 10 percent of India's GDP."
The package, he said, will focus on land, labour, liquidity and law and will cater to various sections, including cottage industry, MSMEs, labourers, middle class, and industries. PM Modi did not share details saying Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman spell out details for each sector which is scheduled to happen at 4 pm on Wednesday.
It is expected to focus on tax breaks for small businesses as well as incentives for domestic manufacturing.
The Rs 20 lakh crore package includes previously announced Rs 1.7 lakh crore package of free foodgrains to poor and cash to poor women and elderly, as well as the Reserve Bank's liquidity measures and interest rate cuts.
The March stimulus announced By FM Sitharaman was was 0.8 percent of GDP and RBI's cut in interest rates, as well as liquidity boosting measures, totalled it to 3.2 percent of the GDP (about Rs 6.5 lakh crore), according to a PTI report.
Due to the nationwide lockdown and social distancing measures that have been prolonged for over 50 days now has put most economic activity in the country to a standstill. Some relaxations have been provided in areas with fewer numbers of infections to re-open businesses.