7th May 2021 11:05:PM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News

While there may be heart-breaking visuals of endless burning pyres reflecting a hapless nation enveloped in deep agony due to its failure in combating Covid 2.0, figures no less disturbing about the current state of Indian economy have also started arriving. Among the ones that came very  recently, a striking one is the revelation that the first wave alone pulled 23 crore citizens into a vicious poverty trap. 75 lakh people losing jobs in April 2021 due to the second wave will come next. The cumulative effect has been gigantic to the extent that a relief package worth at least Rs 8 lakh crore will be needed to lessen the hardships being faced by lower-income groups. Covid 2.0  curve  is showing no sign of flattening and there are apprehensions about an eminent 3rd one also. As one gets deeper into the data, it will be a realisation that despite all narratives which occasionally revolve around the ingeniously crafted term ‘green shoots’, the days ahead for all common Indians will be very uncomfortable. The singular question, however, is that will there be an immediate rollout of remedies that would rescue the Indian economy now under ventilation.

The ‘23 cr Indians slipping below the poverty line’ shocker has come via the “State of Working India 2021: One year of Covid-19”, a report released a few days ago by Azim Premji University. It says that the number of people with daily incomes below Rs 375 was 22.62 crore and 7.24 crore in rural and urban areas respectively at the onset of Covid outbreak in March 2020 and by the end of October 2020 which means full 8 months into the pandemic, these numbers increased to 36.52 crore (61 % rise) in rural areas and 16.38 crore (126 % rise) in urban areas. If calculated collectively, the number is actually an increase of 23 crore - from 29.86 to 52.9 crore! Moreover, unemployment figures released by the widely-trusted Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) on Tuesday last has revealed that in the just-concluded month of April alone, more than 75 lakh people lost their jobs primarily due to localised lockdowns. But it’s the report made by the Consumer Pyramids Household Survey, Azim Premji Foundation and many other civil society organisations that mirrors the economic actualities in a most precise way- a mammoth Rs 8 lakh crore needs to be doled out by the Centre if any effective balm is to be applied on the deep economic wounds, the first-hand recipients of which have been the lower-income groups, undoubtedly the bulk of total population.

A contest may be set to choose which one is more grim- the health scenario or the economy?

Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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