The Union Government is evaluating a cash transfer scheme to reduce the impact of Coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19) on the economy, LiveMint.com reported quoting sources.
The scheme could be in the form of an universal basic income (UBI), where the targeted beneficiaries would receive a minimum income. It could cover the vulnerable sections of the society, where the impact of Covid-19 is much higher.
Given the nature of cash transfer plans, the government may need large revenues and should turn a blind eye to the fiscal deficit. The target has already hit 128.5 per cent of Of FY20 revised estimates during April-January period.
The impact of the coronavirus on various sectors like tourism, hospitality and aviation sectors is devastating, rendering millions jobless.
Many developed countries, such as the US, the UK, have taken fiscal measures to mitigate the impact on their economies. Central banks in many countries, including the US, South Korea and New Zealand, have announced deep cuts in interest rates to make borrowing cheaper. The US government has announced an initial $250 billion package. US Federal Reserve has reduced its lending rates to near zero. A package of measures worth 200 billion euros was also announced in Spain.
The number of coronavirus cases in India saw a steep spike on Thursday. According to the Union health ministry, 166 people have tested positive in India so far. Two new cases of Covid-19 were reported from Mumbai, and one each in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Chhattisgarh on Thursday.