COVID-19: Centre to provide Rs 170,000 crore relief package

5 kg wheat or rice free for 3 months: Finance Minister

Coronavirus lockdown: Govt to provide 5 kg grains, 1 kg pulses for free over next 3 months for the poor, says Sitharaman

This is part of a slew of measures announced by the finance minister under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package on March 26 to deal for health workers, labourers, people below the poverty line and daily-wage earners under the scheme.

She said, "The government has been working so that does affected directly, particularly the poor and the disadvantaged be reached out to".

Insurance cover of 50 lakh rupees per person to for health professionals, the frontline CoronaWarriors - ASHA workers, paramedics, doctors, nurses, sanitary workers - who are putting their lives at risk & treating Coronavirus patients for three months.

The beneficiaries will include paramedics, Aasha workers, doctors, nurses etc.

The government, on Thursday, decided free distribution of 5 kg food grains per person and one kg of pulses per household under PM Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana for next three months to 80 crore poor beneficiaries covered under National food security Act (NFSA) to ensure availability food to poor people during lockdown due to COVID-19. In addition to rice or wheat, each household will get 1 kg of preferred dal for free for the next three months.

This will benefit approximately 13.62 crore families.

"Farmers get annual Rs 6000 but now they will get Rs 2000 at the beginning of the year".

This will be transferred in their account by the first week of April. This is expected to benefit 3 crore people.

With regard to MGNREGs, the wages paid out under the programme have been increased from Rs 182 to Rs 202 per day.

For women who got gas cylinders under the Ujjwala scheme, the government has announced free cylinders for the next three months. This will benefit 5 crore families.

"Government of India will pay the EPF contribution - of both employer and employee (10% each) - for the next three months, so that nobody suffers due to loss of continuity in EPF contribution", she said. This scheme will be applicable for organisation with up to 100 employees, where 90 per cent of employees draw less than Rs 15,000 salary. Collateral-free loan will be doubled to Rs 20 lakh to 63 lakh women self-help groups, impacting 7 crore households.

Families of four crore workers registered under EPF can take benefit of this window.

State governments will be directed under Buildings and Other Construction Workers' Fund to utilise an existing Rs 31,000 crore welfare fund for benefit of 3.5 crore construction workers.

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