‘Not a bad step but…’: Rahul Gandhi’s advice to Centre over economic package
Rahul Gandhi said migrants workers, who are walking home with an empty stomach, the farmers, small businesses and other such people don’t need loans but money.Updated: May 16, 2020 17:53 IST
Senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Saturday said the government must reconsider the Rs 20 lakh crore economic stimulus package and think about direct cash transfers to people suffering amid the lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).
Rahul Gandhi said his message was not a political one and said that he was speaking on behalf of Indians.
“I don’t want to make a political statement but I have a serious reservation about the nature of the package that the government has given. I would like the government to reconsider,” he said.
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“It’s not a bad step but the most important thing right now is that we put money directly into the hands of our poor people,” he said.
The former Congress president gave an analogy about how parents treat a child facing a crisis.
“The mother or the father do not give him a bank loan, they do not give him credit. A mother is ready to give whatever food she has to her daughter or son and the government should follow that spirit,” he said.
“When a mother gives money to her son there are two reasons. The biggest reason is love as parents love their children and the second that they are their future as well. The people who are suffering, walking on an empty stomach are India’s future. We have to support them,” he said.
The Congress leader said migrants workers, the farmers, small businesses and other such people don’t need loans but money.
“With all respect, I would like to ask the Prime Minister to think about putting money directly into people’s bank accounts. He should consider direct bank transfer, MGNREGA for 200 days and money to farmers directly because these people are our future,” the Congress leader said.
“These are the people who have built India. We must support them,” he said.
The government must stop thinking about ratings and start considering people who need money in their pockets to deal with the crisis of the coronavirus pandemic, Rahul Gandhi said.
“I have heard that the reason behind not giving money to such people is ratings. It is being said that if we increase our deficit today, the foreign agencies will downgrade our ratings,” he said.
“Our rating is made by India, farmers, labourers, small and big businesses who need our support and money. Don’t think about ratings and foreign countries. Now, it is the time think about India not others,” the Congress leader said.
Once they start working, India’s ratings will improve, he said.
Before this, the former Congress president has held online interactive sessions with former Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Raghuram Rajan and Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee.
The dialogue with Rajan was first in the series that Gandhi plans to hold with public intellectuals. It included a detailed discussion on the state of the economy and how to revive it in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
Gandhi also addressed a video press conference earlier this month and addressed questions on the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) and the economic crisis.