Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while addressing the nation on Tuesday, 12 May, announced 'Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan' – an economic relief package worth Rs 20 lakh crore for a ‘self-reliant’ India.
He said that the package, estimated to be around 10 percent of the GDP, is intended to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic. The PM also stressed on the use of country-made products in a bid to boost small and local businesses.
“I announce a special economic package today. This will play an important role in the ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’. The announcements made by the government over COVID-19, decisions of the RBI and today’s package totals to Rs 20 lakh crore. This is 10 percent of India’s GDP,” he added.
‘Be Vocal for Local’
Stressing on the needs of small local businesses and systems, PM Modi urged people to be ‘vocal for local’.
“Time has taught us that we must make ‘local’ the mantra of our lives. Global brands that are there today were once local too but when people there started supporting them they became global. That is why from today, every Indian must become vocal for our local,” he said.
“There is just one way out of this for India. A self-reliant India,” PM Modi said.
When India speaks of self-reliance, it does not advocate for a self-centered system. In India's self-reliance, there is a concern for the whole world's happiness, cooperation and peace, he said.
“When the crisis started then not even a single PPE kit was manufactured in India, only a few N-95 masks were available. Today, two Lakh PPE kits and two Lakh N95 masks are manufactured in India daily,” he added.
‘Details of Lockdown 4.0 Will Be Given Before 18 May’
PM Modi also said that lockdown 4.0 will be with new rules and regulations and stressed on the need for following them diligently. He said that details for lockdown 4.0 will be announced before 18 May.
“Scientists say that corona will be a part of our lives for a very long time. But we can't let our lives remain confined around corona. We will wear masks and maintain social distancing but we will not let it affect us. So lockdown 4.0 will be in a new form with new rules,” he said.
“Based on the suggestions by states, information related to lockdown 4.0 will be given to you before 18 May. We will fight Corona and we will move forward,” he added.
“One virus has wreaked havoc. Crores of lives are at risk. The world is at a war to save lives. We have not heard or seen a situation like this before. For humanity, this is unimaginable,” he said.
India is currently under the third phase of the lockdown till 17 May to curb the spread of the highly contagious coronavirus. While certain relaxations have been granted for areas falling under green and orange zones, most restrictions continue in the red zones.
The country has recorded over 70,000 coronavirus cases and 2,293 deaths so far, according to the Health Ministry data.
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