New Delhi [India], April 26 (ANI): CPI-M General Secretary Sitaram Yechury has targeted the Central government over its handling of COVID-19 lockdown in the country and demanded that the government transfer Rs 7,500 per month, for the next three months, to the accounts of people who lost their livelihood due to the crisis.
He pointed out that the unemployment rate in the country shot up from 7.5 per cent to 23.6 per cent from early March to April 20.
"It is imperative that immediately the Central government transfers Rs 7,500 per month for the next three months to all who have lost their livelihoods. Surely, if a staggering Rs 7.76 lakhs of crores of loans taken by the superrich and corporates can be waived off by your government during the last five years, there should be no shortage of funds to feed and support the majority of our people," he said in a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The CPI-M leader also questioned the manner in which the lockdown was imposed in the country.
"Since the lockdown, the urge among the migrant workers to return to their homes has seen surging crowds in huge numbers seeking to leave for their homes as they have lost all means of livelihood and shelter. This in itself negated one of the objectives of the lockdown, of maintaining physical distancing in order to contain community transmission of the pandemic," he wrote.
"Since the announcement of the lockdown, we had suggested that the Central government must immediately provide free food to all the needy. Huge stocks of foodgrains are rotting in our central godowns. These should be sent to the states for free distribution. Neither of these demands has even been considered by the government with you as the Prime Minister," he added.
India is under a nation-wide lockdown which was imposed on March 25 and later extended on April 14 to May 3 to stem the spread of coronavirus. (ANI)