Go ‘vocal for local’: Modi appeals people to endorse local products, announces $265bn fiscal stimulus

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NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday urged people to buy and endorse local products like khadi, stating that COVID-19 time has taught made us realise the importance of local traders, craftsmen and brands.

“Time has taught us that we must make ‘local’ the mantra of our lives. Global brands that are there today were once local too. But when people there started supporting them, they became global. That is why from today, every Indian must become vocal for our local,” the Prime Minister said in an address to the nation.

“I request people to buy and endorse local products. We have done this before also with khadi and it worked very well. It is time for us to do our bit for our friends on the streets like street hawkers, daily wage workers, migrant labourers and fisherman,” he said.

NEW DELHI: Indian Prime Minister Narendera Modi addresses to his nation on TV on Tuesday.

He said that certain key announcements will be made soon for “friends on the streets”. Stressing that people need to buy local products and spread the word, he said, “I am proud to recollect that I had asked citizens to buy khadi and to support handloom workers. In a short time, demand and sales touched record levels. Khadi became a big brand because of you and we got good and effective results.”

Fourth lockdown

Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that the fourth phase of the nationwide COVID-19 induced lockdown would be in “new form with new rules.”

“Scientists say that COVID-19 will be a part of our lives for a very long time. But we can’t let our lives remain confined around COVID-19. We will wear masks and maintain social distancing but we will not let it affect us. So, lockdown four will be in a new form with new rules,” Prime Minister Modi said while addressing the nation.

“Based on the suggestions by States, information related to lockdown four will be given to you before May 18. We will fight COVID-19. We will move forward,” he added.

The Prime Minister on Monday held a video conference meeting with Chief Ministers of all states to discuss the road ahead in India’s fight against COVID-19 and noted that he was of the firm view that measures needed during the third phase of lockdown will not be needed in the fourth phase. The phase three of the lockdown is coming to an end on May 17.

Fiscal stimulus

Narendra Modi on Tuesday announced USD 265 billion fiscal stimulus to deal with COVID-19 situation in the country. The package is the second largest in Asia after Japan.

“I announce a special economic package today. This will play an important role in the ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan.’ The announcements made by the government over COVID, decisions of RBI and today’s package totals to Rs 20 lakh crore (USD 265 billion). This is 10 per cent of India’s GDP,” the Prime Minister said in his address to the nation.

“This economic package is for our small-scale industries, MSMEs, which are the means of livelihood of crores of people and is the strong base of our resolve for self-reliant India. To prove the resolve of self-reliant India, the emphasis has been given on land, labour, liquidity and laws, in this package,” he said.

Prime Minister Modi said the “economic package is for the country’s workers, farmers, who are working hard day and night for the countrymen in every season. This economic package is for the middle class of our country, who pays tax honestly and contributes to the development of the country.”

While most of the countries struggling with the coronavirus crisis have focused on financial packages only, India has gone much further in its efforts to revive the economy by effectively containing the virus as well and its impact on the people’s livelihood. (ANI)