Govt working to save lots of lives, livelihoods, Finance Minister tells India Inc amid Covid surge

New Delhi, April 19

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said she had taken inputs from various industry chambers on concerns of India Inc with regard to the management of Covid pandemic and the Centre would continue to work with state governments to save lives and livelihoods.

She sought feedback from businesses to deal with the impact of the second Covid wave on the country’s economy.

It is to be noted that the economy contracted by a whopping 23.9 per cent in the first quarter (April-June) of the previous financial year due to the outbreak of the pandemic.

“Spoke on telephone with each of the following business/Chamber leaders. Took their inputs on industry/Association related matters. Informed them that GoI at various levels from @PMOIndia is responding to #Covid management. Working together with states for lives and livelihoods,” she said in a tweet.

The Finance Minister had interactions with heads of industry chambers, including CII president Uday Kotak, Uday Shankar, president Ficci, and Vineet Agarwal, president, Assocham.

She also spoke to many business leaders like Tata Steel managing director TV Narendran, L&T chairman AM Naik, TCS managing director Rajesh Gopinathan, Maruti Suzuki chairman RC Bhargava, TVS Group chairman Venu Srinivasan and Hero Moto Corp managing director Pawan Munjal to take their feedback on the situation arising out of the surging Covid cases and local containments.

Last week, the Finance Minister made it clear that the government would not go in for lockdowns in a big way and only resort to local containment to break the Covid chain.

“Even with the second wave, we are very clear that we are not going in for lockdowns in a big way. We don’t want to totally arrest the economy. The local level isolation of patients, or households which have people in quarantine are the methods through which the crisis will be handled, the second wave will be handled. There shall not be lockdown,” Sitharaman had said. PTI

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