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Pradeep Singh

New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today announced the last tranche of Rs 20 lakh crore stimulus package to boost the economy amid the COVID-19 crisis. She announced seven areas to focus on - MGNREGA, health and education-related steps, business and COVID, decriminalisation of Companies Act, ease of doing business, public sector enterprises and state govt resources.

Sitharaman said that soon after the lockdown was announced, the government acted quickly with Garib Kalyan Yojana to reach out to those who needed food while praising the government agencies and state governments for arranging food for migrants.

Increase In State's Borrowing Limits

States' net borrowing ceiling for 2020-21 is Rs 6.41 lakh crores, based on 3% of State Domestic Product (GSDP). Following a request by states, Centre has now decided to increase their borrowing limits to 5%, said Sitharaman.

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Policy For Public Sector Enterprises (PSEs)

"I would like to announce a public sector enterprise policy. Need a coherent policy wherein private sector will be allowed to participate in all sectors while public sector enterprises will continue to play an important role," she said adding that GoI will announce new policy which will broadly categorise strategic sectors and others and in such strategic sectors, at least one PSE will be there but private sector will also be allowed.

Decriminalisation Of Companies Act Defaults

Centre has decided to decriminalise Companies Act defaults, said FM Sitharaman while announcing the fifth and the final tranche of the economic stimulus package today.

CORPORATE LAW

Corporate Law measures for ease of doing business have included timely action during COVID–19 to reduce compliance burden under various provisions of the Companies Act. The government is working on a mission mode on the next phase of 'ease of doing business' reforms, she said.

Online Education During COVID-19

Swayam Prabha DTH channels have been launched to support and reach those who do not have access to the internet. Three channels were already earmarked for school education and now 12 another channels have been added.

Increase In Allocation To MGNREGS

Importantly, the government will now allocate an additional Rs 40,000 crores to MGNREGS to generate more employment opportunities.

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Health Reforms

Infectious disease hospital blocks will be set up in all districts and integrated public health labs will come up in all districts and blocks, informed the Finance Minister.

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Education In COVID Times

Sitharaman said that technology-driven education to be the focus post-COVID. PM eVIDYA programme for multi-mode access to digital/online education to be launched immediately for the same.

One-time transfer of Rs 2,000 has reached 8.19 crore farmers, a total of Rs 16,394 crore. NSAP beneficiaries have got Rs 1,405 crore in the first installment and Rs 1,402 crore in 2nd instalment. One-time transfer of Rs 2,000 has reached 8.19 crore farmers, a total of Rs 16,394 crore. NSAP beneficiaries got Rs 1,405 crore in the first installment and Rs 1,402 crore in 2nd instalment.

Besides, a total of 8.19 crore farmers have received Rs 16,394 crores through the Kisan Yojna, she said, adding that 20 crore Jan Dhan account holding women got Rs 10,025 crore and 2.2 crore building and construction workers got Rs 3,950 crores while 6.81 crore people got free LPG cylinders and 12 lakh EPFO holders got online withdrawal of advance.

Earlier, the finance minister had said that the Centre would introduce competition, transparency and private sector participation in the coal sector and will do infrastructure development of Rs 50,000 crore. Besides, she announced Rs 1 lakh crore Agri Infrastructure Fund for farm gate infrastructure for farmers and Rs 10,000 crore scheme for the formalisation of Micro Food Enterprises (MFEs).

Sitharaman had also proposed amendments to the Essential Commodities Act for better price realisation for farmers and announced the 'One Nation One Ration Card', free food grain supply to migrants and creation of affordable rental housing complexes (ARHC) in urban areas for migrant workers.

The announcements following Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement of the economic package to make the country 'self-reliant' and fight the Covid-19 crisis.

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