This is a thread on India's responses to the #Covid_19 pandemic. Ranging from relief and stimulus packages in response to specific challenges that India faces, plus confirmed health/epidemiological information from experts. #Covid_19india
A thread by @Schandillia on the Indian government and its various party establishments' unscientific and misleading claims in fighting the pandemic.
GoI announced a relief package on March 27th which according to them is as high as Rs 1.7 lakh crore ($22.5 billion). Sharing some important points from a discussion on @BloombergQuint with @Jayati1609, M. Govinda Rao, Rahul Bajoria and Reetika Khera.
- Relief package worth Rs 0.8% of India's current nominal GDP
- Additional in-kind transfers in the PDS such as 5kg more of rice and wheat and 1kg more of pulses.
- Several cash transfers to marginalised groups of population, especially elderly, disabled and widowed women.
Jayati Ghosh says that the govt has not responded adequately to the scale of the crisis. While front-loading of in-kind transfers is welcome, none of the measures account for the fact that people cannot work and earn even if they wanted to because of the lockdown.
Ghosh also says that the relief measures don't consider the severe disruptions to supply chains and distribution networks of farmers.
Rahul Bajoria (Barclays): Countries like Singapore have announced stimulus packages of upto 8-9% of GDP mostly in the form of support for payrolls, making lines of credit available and moratorium on interest payments. Need more monetary and fiscal support.
M. Govinda Rao (14th Finance Commission): Most of the items are front-loading of existing schemes, not sure about the claimed size of the relief measure. The Economic Taskforce or Min of Finance or PMO can do more to co-ordinate with states on relief packages.
Rao also calls for a relaxation of fiscal deficit targets for the states as tax devolution is likely to be lower in this fiscal year.
Reetika Khera: Should suspend not just Aadhaar-based biometric attendances in offices, but also Aadhaar-based authentications in ration distribution to prevent community spread of the #Covid_19india virus. While targeting women for relief measures is welcome, it would have been..
...better served if targeted to NREGA job card holders' families instead of Jan Dhan account holders as there won't be risk of duplication in the former and the latter are not the worst affected population group. SHG loans and MNREGA wage hikes have no meaning during a lockdown.
Around Rs 3.7 lakh crore worth of liquidity through various means.

(i) Repo rate cut of 75 bps
(ii) Borrowing limit raised through Marginal Standing Facility to 3% of Statutory Liquidity Ratio
(iii) Cut in Cash Reserve Ratio by 1 percentage point
(iv) Mortgage holidays for 3 months (till June 30th) during which interest will accumulate, but payable later.

(v) Cut in reverse repo by 90 bps which is 15bps more than the repo cut to ensure that banks lend from the newly available inflow instead of parking it with RBI.
There is a potential benefit from all of this, with the risk being that we repeat the mistakes from 2008. Relaxation of NPA norms through the moratorium extending indefinitely till we further inflate the NPA crisis.
Additional risk in the absence of targeting of such a moratorium is that the newly infused capital might be parked with undeserving firms that were insolvent prior to the pandemic. It might be better served if it goes to firms facing a liquidity crisis instead.
Here is @someshjha7's thread from Anand Vihar bus station in Delhi. At a time when we are supposed to be isolating ourselves with sufficient storage of food and other essential items.
. @Deshdeep_India's photo from Ghaziabad.
The police are marking these 'violators' of the lockdown by writing on their foreheads.
How to run a biometric-free food security system by @SilviaHedley.
More distress stories of migrant workers. These are power loom workers in Bhiwandi (30 km outside Mumbai, Maharashtra) who have been stranded by the lockdown.
Thread by @rozi_roti on measures taken by various state governments to supply subsidised food rations.
Thread by @idr_online on #COVID19 and the development sector.
Excellent thread by @ChinmayTumbe on migration within, and to and from India, as a guide to understand possible "hotspots" of the virus infection #Covid19India
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