Millennium Post (Kolkata)
Assocham urges Centre, states to aid informal sector with relief
NEW DELHI: Industry body Assocham on Wednesday said it is working with the Maharashtra government to mitigate the economic impact of its 15-day curfew, and urged all states to reach out to the most vulnerable sections of the industry, particularly in the informal sectors, with the best possible relief.
The Maharashtra government on Tuesday announced a 15-day statewide curfew from Wednesday amid the spike in Coronavirus cases in the state. The curfew, which exempts essential services, will come into effect from 8 pm on Wednesday.
“We would continue to remain engaged with the central and the Maharashtra governments, in our efforts to mitigate the economic impact of the 15-day Jantata Curfew in the state.
“We have also urged the federal and states to reach out to the most vulnerable sections of the industry, particularly in the informal sectors, with the best possible relief,” industry body Assocham said in a statement.
Assocham said it has approached all the states and the Centre to provide liberal regulatory and financial forbearances for compliances.
Fixed charges like electricity dues, lease rentals, licence fees and other levies should be waived, to help businesses maintain continuity, it suggested. Restaurants, hotels, small eateries should be given financial support for retaining the manpower, while the formal sectors of the economy should be engaged for regulatory forbearances, Assocham added.
Sebi and other regulators should speed up clearances for those seeking to strengthen their balance sheets by fundraising from the financial markets, it added. “With stringent restrictions not only by Maharashtra but several other states, the economic impact is imperative.
“Ironically, the outbreak of the second wave of the pandemic has come about when the economy was all set for a smart recovery. Now, we have big hopes of still faster roll-out of the vaccinations,” the chamber said.