AtmaNirbhar Bharat – How can we turn Crisis into An Opportunity?
The AtmaNirbhar Bharat & Vocal for Local Concept Explained: The recent pandemic brought many changes in consumer behavior and their pattern. While shopping malls and multiplexes were closed, small grocery shop and vegetable and fruit vendors were delivering essential items at the doorstep of every citizen’s houses. Those who earlier used to buy almost everything from shopping mall and big box retailers have now turned their preference to buying from small grocery stores and vendors selling goods nearby their living area. Due to this, many multi-national retailers had to face huge revenue fall down.
The Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan (ANBA) announced by India’s honorable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi aims to reduce unemployment, insolvency, and poverty and increase India’s per capita GDP. According to our Prime Minister our scriptures ‘Esha Upanishadha’ talks about Self Reliance. The concept of Self-Reliant India is brought up during the times of economic slowdown with the purpose to make Indian Economy stronger and to promote local products in India as well as all over the world. This write up talks about What is Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan, what is it aiming at, what is offered under this package, what will be our duty as citizens and how it will impact overall and economically.
The Mission and Vision of AtmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan (ANBA)
Due to the long-lasted lockdown phases, India has come to a very crucial juncture. The Indian culture and tradition have always backed the concept of being Self-Reliant. The mission of this Abhiyan was explained by our Prime Minister as not being self-centric but being self sufficient so that it can bring happiness, co-operation and peace of the world. This Abhiyan aiming to be built on the five pillars namely, economy, infrastructure, system, vibrant demography and demand. It is basically a re-packaged version of ‘Make In India’ concept with more benefits for MSME sector, encouraging private participation in various sectors, escalating FDI in the defense sector and many more. The primary mission is of the economic reform that will definitely get the economic growth back to its desired level.
Talking about the vision for this Abhiyan, The Prime Minister urged in his speech to all Indians to come up with detailed study of every sector and to think big. He added Intent, Inclusion, Investment, Infrastructure and Innovation are very important for India in responding to high growth trajectory. Such reforms according to him are systemic, planned, integrated, inter-connected and futuristic process. In his vision he not only aims to promote local products but also suggests everyone to improve quality, modernization of the supply chain and providing best products. He emphasized on inner strength and self-belief for making this Abhiyan successful.
Let’s Revise The ANBA Package – The Mega Economic Reform Package
Prime Minister in his appeal for Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan, announced an economic package of Rs. 20 lakh crore which comes to 10% of the GDP of our country which is one of the largest relief packages in the world. In order to make this plan successful, land, labor, liquidity and laws all have been specifically considered under this package. The package will be used for cottage industry, home industry, small-scale industry, MSME, laborers, farmers, middle-class people and those Indian industries which are working to boost our economy dedicatedly. The Finance Minister of India Nirmala Sitharaman announced in a press conference the package in five tranches. This package is inclusive of Rs. 1.7 Lakh crore of free food grains to the poor and cash to poor women and old people, as well as liquidity measures and interest rate cuts by Reserve Bank of India which entirely amounts to Rs. 8.01 lakh crore.
— The First Tranche
The First Tranche of Rs. 5,94,550 crore package focusing mainly on MSME sector, Provident Fund relief, NBFCs, TDS/TCS rates, DISCOMs, RERA companies and others:
Relief in Provident Fund
- Statutory Provident Fund Contribution by employers has been reduced to 10% (earlier 12%) for 3 months by way of Rs. 6,750 crore liquidity relief.
- The Finance Minister also announced Rs. 2,500 liquidity support to businesses and workers for the next 3 months.
Relief in MSME Sectors
- Rs. 50,000 crore equity infusion for MSMEs through Fund of Funds (FoFs)
- Rs. 20,000 crore Subordinate Debts
- Rs. 3 lack crores Collateral free Loans for MSMEs were announced under this package
- The definition of MSMEs has been revised in order to include more businesses that will be benefitted from this package
Relief in NBFC’s
- Rs. 30,000 crore liquidity boosts to strengthen the collapsed financials the Finance Minister announced that are collapsed due to the COVID-19 pandemic
- Rs. 45,000 crore Partial Credit Guarantee Scheme 2.0
Relief in Other Sectors
- Rs. 90,000 crore liquidity is provided to DISCOM (Power Distribution Companies) to reduce the piled up debts
- Rs. 50,000 crore relief fund provided to reduce TDS and TCS rates by 25% for the payments other than salaries
- RERA registered projects registration and completion date extended for a period of 6 months which can be further extended for up to 3 months by the Regulatory Authorities
- To promote local companies, the government has decided to disapprove global tenders up to Rs. 200 crore
- Due dates of statutory payments and filing of tax returns for the Financial Year 2019-2020 have also been extended to 30th November 2020 (for income tax returns) and to 31st October 2020 (for tax audit cases)
— The Second Tranche
The Second Tranche of Rs. 3,10,000 crore package aiming to cater farmers and migrant workers:
- The introduction of ‘one nation one ration card’ under this tranche is going to allow every migrant worker to buy ration from anywhere in the country.
- Food and Shelter facilities to migrant workers from the disaster response fund worth Rs. 11,000 crore was allowed to the state governments by the central government.
- To enable institutional credit at a concessional rate for farmers, fishermen and animal husbandry farmers, the Finance Minister allocated Rs. 2 lakh crore through Kisan credit cards.
- 10,000 working capital will be provided initially to all the street vendors who are around 50 lakh in numbers, making it a special credit of Rs. 5,000 crore.
— The Third Tranche
The Third Tranche of Rs. 1,50,000 crore package focusing on agriculture, dairy and its related sectors:
- Under Pradhan Mantri Matsya Yojana, Rs. 20,000 will be provided to each fisherman and Rs. 10,000 crore strengthen micro food enterprises.
- To develop farm-gate infrastructure considering set up for cold chains and post-harvest management infrastructure, Rs. 1,00,000 crore were allocated.
- 500 crore allocated for bee-keeping infrastructure development.
- 15,000 crore for Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development fund was raised.
- 4,000 crore were allocated for herbal agricultural produce.
— The Forth & Fifth Tranche
The Forth and Fifth Tranches of Rs. 48,100 crore catering reforms for coal, minerals, air space management, defense production, MRO, DISCOMs in UTs, and atomic energy:
- 40,000 crore was additionally allocated for the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) to increase job creation. It would be worth to notice that earlier in the budget this year, Rs. 61,000 crore were already allocated to this scheme.
- Setting up of a new Public Sector Enterprises Policy to enable consolidation of PSU firms in strategic sectors.
- Once again to cater MSME sector, the Finance Minister said there will be no new Insolvency Proceedings for one year. Suspension of the initiation of fresh insolvency proceedings up to one year to help companies impacted by COVID-19.
- Simplification of utilization of Indian air space to reduce air travel cost.
- Commercialization of coal industry and privatization of discoms in metros for smooth-running of their functions.
The above package is also said to be leveraging the financial instruments that will improve India’s fiscal conditions. The mega stimulus package is equal to Pakistan’s GDP, five times of the personal wealth of Mukesh Ambani and 17% of BSE market value. However, there are about 44% respondents in MSME sector who want direct cash benefits and are not satisfied with what has been offered. There may be challenges by way of liquidity issues, non-existence of demand and escalated fiscal deficit. Though there are challenges against it sufficiency and proper utilization, the biggest impetus package is all set to make India a Self-Reliant Nation in the coming years.
The Role of Every Indian Citizen in ANBA
While the stimulus package offers relief to many sectors, every Indian citizen has a crucial role to play. The Prime Minister urged each one of us to promote local products and use Indian products more and more. We use quite a lot of foreign products starting from our daily use to our leisure activities. The Prime Minister also stated in his speech that all famous global products have started from their local business and when local people started using them more, promoting them, proud of them, they became multi-national products.
Similarly, we too can promote our products to not only at the national level but also at the world level. The time has come for us to make our nation and its every citizen independent. When he urged everyone to buy and promote Khadi, he feels very proud to see the revenue growth and its reach to the new levels in a very short span of time. He is hopeful too now that when we will not only buy local products but also advertise them at the global level, it will be truly called a ‘Local for Vocal’. Our responsibility now lies on us to make the 21st century – the century of India.
‘Self-Reliance leads to happiness, satisfaction and empowerment’ so says our Prime Minister.
When the crisis takes its place, it is everyone’s duty to create an opportunity out of it for the betterment of the nation. The short-term impact of this should never be considered as we all know that the crisis has hit every sector to some or the other extent. Hence, its long-term effect should be contemplated and by adopting futuristic approach. It is important to note that the Abhiyan does not suggest to cut off relations from global platform and trade only with local products, the fundamental concept of this Abhiyan is to become not only self-sufficient but also to promote local businesses and to show off and feel proud about what invaluable assets we possess.
Certainly, this is going to be one of the biggest reforms worldwide. By nourishing local manufacturers, supply chain and with diversification in services and products the Abhiyan can be made a successful mission.
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