Centre’s COVID Relief Package a ‘Hoax’: Rahul Gandhi

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday hit out at the Centre saying that the COVID-19 relief package is a ‘hoax’.

He said that the finance minister’s economic package could not be utilized by families on food, medicines and education for children.

“No family can spend FM’s ‘economic package’ on their living-food-medicine-child’s school fees. This is not a package, it’s another hoax!” he tweeted in Hindi.

Former finance minister P Chidambaran also slammed the Centre’s new package.

“‘Some elementary truths: Credit guarantee is not credit. Credit is more debt. No banker will lend to a debt-ridden business. Debt-burdened or cash-starved businesses do not want more credit, they need non-credit capital. More supply does not mean more demand (consumption). On the contrary, more demand (consumption) will trigger more supply,” he tweeted.

“Demand (consumption) will not grow in an economy where jobs have been lost and incomes/wages have been reduced. The answer to this crisis is to put money in the hands of the people, especially the poor and lower middle classes,” he added.

On Monday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced Rs 1.1 lakh crore loan guarantee scheme for sectors who are struggling to recover from the economic impact that came along with the second wave of COVID-19.

The finance minister had announced a Credit Guarantee Scheme to facilitate new lending among the smallest borrowers.

“Under the Credit Guarantee Scheme, we aim to reach out to 25 lakh people who are absolutely small borrowers. Loan to be given to the smallest borrowers by Microfinance Institutions. A maximum Rs 1.25 lakhs amount to be lent,” she had said.

The Centre also expanded the financial support being provided under the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) by Rs 1.5 lakh crore for micro, small and medium enterprises.

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