The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has submitted its proposals for an economic stimulus package to revive the economy to Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The proposals were formulated after week-long consultations with different sectors of the economy. The consultations took place between 3 April and 10 April.
The party held meetings on measures needed to taken to pull the economy out of the pandemic blues. It met at least four groups before compiling the recommendations.
A source close to the development told Sputnik, "sectoral consultations have been held with economists to discuss the macro-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Another group, from which BJP took feedback, was small and medium enterprise (SMEs) and Non-Banking Finance Companies (NBFCs)".
"The party has also taken feedback from sectors belonging to artificial intelligence, big data, and how to involve welfare schemes of the various Indian state governments to ensure maximum relief and benefit to the people of the country", the source added.
Finance Minister Sitharaman along with her team met Prime Minister Narendra Modi last week.
Even though businesses are eagerly awaiting the economic stimulus package to help bear the losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, sources reveal that the stimulus may be announced only around the time the nationwide lockdown is lifted.
Various industries have demanded several measures such as the reduction of the goods and services tax by 50 percent for the next six months. Even though the government is working on fiscal measures, India's central bank, the Reserve Bank of India, has announced several measures such as a reduction of policy rates which will ensure liquidity in the hands of industry.
India is currently under complete lockdown to break the cycle of the pandemic. Prime Minister Modi had announced a 21-day lockdown beginning 25 March, which was later extended until 3 May in the wake of mounting numbers of coronavirus-affected people.
Presently, there are more than 20,000 coronavirus cases in India, with 681 fatalities so far. However, as many as 4,257 patients have been cured or discharged as well, as per the federal Health and Family Welfare Ministry.