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Coronavirus Lockdown: Sharad Pawar gives five suggestions to help tackle economic crisis in states

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar took to Twitter to suggest few points for the central government to consider in order to maintain the economic balance for the states.

Coronavirus Lockdown: Sharad Pawar gives five suggestions to help tackle economic crisis in states
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After the 21-days nationwide lockdown, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday announced that the same will remain till May 3 in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. With this, the business activities across the country have come to a halt, leaving the states in an economic crisis.

Amid this, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar took to Twitter to suggest few points for the central government to consider in order to maintain the economic balance for the states.

“In the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is difficult for the states to maintain the economic balance. Here are a few suggestions that could be considered by the central government,” Sharad Pawar tweeted. 

In a series of tweets, Sharad Pawar raised some points which could help the economy in stated amid the coronavirus outbreak and lockdown. 

  • Sharad Pawar, former Union Minister, suggested the extension of Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) deferment policy to state debt. “RBI has implemented a new deferment policy regarding the loan repayment in the background of COVID-19 lockdown. This should be made applicable to State Debt as well. The central government should defer payment of instalments to RBI on State Debt at least for six months,” Pawar said. 
  • The second point Pawar has suggested is for the Nationalised Banks to extend interest-free advances to the State government. “Most of the Nationalised Banks have flushed off more than 10 Lakh Crore of funds to corporates in the last five years. In the situation of COVID-19 Pandemic these Nationalised Banks should extend interest-free advances to the State Government,” the NCP chief said. 
  • The veteran leader further suggested the government of India to channelise the agriculture produce from before to the poor and needy. “More than 1.3 Lakh tonnes of wheat purchased by Food Cooperation of India (FCI) last year is still not lifted from the godowns in Punjab. Since this year’s wheat harvest is on & there is a problem of storage, the government of India should channelise the yield to the poor, needy & migrant labourers in the States,” Pawar tweeted.
  • Asking for a relaxation in the state fiscal deficit limit to deal with the additional expenditure and revenue fall, Sharad Pawar said that the state governments are seeking relaxation in their limit by as much as 4 per cent. “Under the FRBM act, states are mandated to keep their fiscal deficit under 3% of GSDP. States have sought relaxation in their limit by as much as 4%,” Pawar said. 
  • Moreover, the NCP supremo said that the contributions made by Corporates to the Chief Minister Relief Fund should be considered as CSR. “The CM's Relief Fund has always been kept out of the CSR provision. Corporates contributions for CM’s Relief Fund should be considered as CSR. All-State Disaster Management Authorities will be empowered to deal with COVID related crisis in various quarters if it is done so,” Pawar stated. 

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