PM Modi on Tuesday announced a nationwide lockdown until April 14, 2020 as a measure to combat the spread of COVID – 19. During the lockdown, the PM has urged the citizens to stay indoors and has assured that essential supplies shall be provided. In the first few days of the lockdown itself, the country is reeling under its impact that is to say - countless people have been left unemployed – especially the daily wage workers whose sustain on meagre jobs to earn their living, small businesses have been acutely impacted, the financial markets witnessed severe volatility and disturbances.
The FM announced an Economic Package rolled out by the Government to support the welfare of the people. A budget of INR 1.70 lac crore has been allocated and benefits of this would be allotted through the PM Garibkalyan Ann Yogna Scheme and the Direct Benefit Scheme. Also, a fund of INR 15,000 crore was set aside to facilitate the country’s infrastructure to tackle the Novel Coronavirus.
To combat the COVID – 19, in addition to the initiatives undertaken by the Government, corporate India has united and put it’s best foot forward to support the country. Here’s how the biggies are lending a helping hand in these testing times :
- Vedanta Resources : The metals and mining company has committed INR 100 crore towards fighting the COVID 19 Pandemic. The fund allotted will cater to three areas – livelihood of the daily worker, employees and contract worker, preventive healthcare and will provide timely help to communities in and around the various plant locations of the company. In his statement, CEO – Anil Agarwal stated that the Fund was the first step on Vedanta’s behalf and incase need arises, the corpus will increase.
Also, during the period of crises the company has announced that it shall not cut salaries or fire staff, including temporary workers.
- Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd : Chairman – Anand Mahindra has announced that Mahindra Holiday Resorts will be offered as temporary care facilities. Also, their teams have been working of indigenously manufacturing of a cost effective ventilator for COVID – 19 patients.
- Reliance Industries : Reliance Industries has set up the first fully equipped and dedicated COVID – 19 The hospital is fully funded by the Reliance Foundation. Additional measures which have been taken up by Reliance Industries during the times of crises include – increasing it’s production facilities to produce INR 1,00,000 face masks per day and large number of protective equipment for health workers, providing free fuel for emergency service vehicles to transport COVID 19 patients. Reliance Foundation will provide free meals to people across various cities in partnership with NGO’s.
- The Tata Group : The Tata Trusts & Sons have committed to contribute INR 1500 cr. towards the COVID 19 relief fund, Chairman Ratan Tata announced. The fund shall be utilized to provide protective equipment to medical personnel, respiratory systems for treating increasing cases, testing kits to speed up the testing in the country and setting up treatment facilities to help those already affected with the virus. It will also train health workers to help fight the virus.
- Uber : Uber has announced that they will provide financial assistance to anyone who drives or delivers with Uber and is diagnosed with COVID – 19 or placed in individual quarantine by public health authority.
- ICERTIS : The company, in partnership with the Pune Muncipal Corporation has committed to contribute INR 25 lacs to tackle COVID – 19. The contribution is for the doctors and nurses of the Naidu Hospital in Pune. The hospital is designated in Pune to attend to the COVID – 19 patients. The fund was set up especially to aid the frontline teams as they unite to fight the corona virus.
- Hero Cycles Ltd. : The biggest maker of bicycles in India has set up contingency funds of INR 100 crore to help it’s employees , vendors and dealer partners deal with the impact of the COVID – 19 outburst. The company has reached out to Punjab & Uttar Pradesh governments to help local authorities deal with the ongoing crises.
Apart from the big corporations, several other smaller companies and firms are extending their support & co-operation to curb the further outrage of the COVID – 19. Several celebrities, film stars, cricketers and a heartening amount of other people have contributed various amounts towards the COVID 19 fund set up by the government and other charitable institutes.
In an attempt to make difficult times easier, it’s heartening to see the country unite to fight this battle against the invisible enemy. The efforts sure will provide some relief to cope with the uncertain times and to eventually get through from this.