By Alee khan
Last year, due to covid-19 the country’s economy collapsed and the industry was derailed. The country faced a strict lockdown in the direction of prevention of covid-19 infection. A complete lockdown was implemented across the country, which was relaxed in a phased manner as per the need and the industry started getting back on track. But one year was not completed that covid-19 once again knocked. As the country was ramping up its efforts to deal with the economic challenges, the second wave of covid-19 once again turned everything upside down. The havoc of covid-19 on India has had a very negative impact on the economic sector. Where, today there is an environment of volatility in the market due to Corona epidemic. At the same time, a sharp increase in unemployment has been registered as a result of this epidemic, tensions are being seen on supply chains, declining government income, the collapse of the tourism industry, a sharp reduction in consumer activity and a drop in fuel consumption. Along with this, due to the second wave of covid-19, the deteriorating industry came to the fore. Especially small industries related to printing press, advertising and luxury items are in dire straits today.
According to an estimate, during the Corona period, about 10 percent of the industries of the Micro, Small and Medium (SMSE) sector were closed last year and more than 30 percent were on the verge of closure. This time again the knock of Corona has caused a big blow to the micro, small and medium industries. Obviously, it will take many years for the industry to recover from this blow. This time the industry is more affected by the havoc of covid-19 for the last two months. In such a situation, the entrepreneur is not in a position to think ahead in the ongoing havoc of Corona. As the period of restrictions continues, there will be a hollow in the roots of the industry. However, now the cases of infection are registering a decline. Despite that, it is going to be interesting to see how quickly workers turn to industries. Because it is not possible for industries and business establishments to run without workers.
Today, the micro, small and medium scale industry has been hit hard due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to TIE Delhi-NCR and other reports, the startup ecosystem in India was particularly affected by the lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. CARE Rating Agency in a survey has found that amidst business uncertainty due to the second wave of Covid-19, most of the covid-affected micro, small and medium industries cannot expect any improvement in their business activities for the next six months. So it is really worrying. Last year, the present central government had made a provision of 20 thousand crore rupees for the troubled micro, small and medium scale industries. In this, 2 lakh SMSEs were claimed to get help. Approval was given to infuse capital of Rs. 50 thousand crore for SMSE through Funds and Funds. Emergency working capital facility of Rs 3 lakh crore was provided for SMSE sector. In such a situation, this help was quite a relief for the industry.
This time the second wave of covid-19 has completely broken the back of the industry. There is a need to bring the derailed industry back on track. There is a dire need of government efforts for this. Now the time has come to provide relief to the entire industry. First of all, money should be put in the pockets of the people, for this it is very important to increase the income of the people. When people have money in their pockets, only then will they be in a position to do some sales tax since the lockdown has emptied people’s pockets. In addition, spending on infrastructure should be further boosted. Import tax should be made competitive, income tax exemption limit should be increased, so that demand increases. Simultaneously, the time has come to accelerate the disinvestment of public companies. Emphasize measures to boost the manufacturing sector. To ensure the availability of raw materials, reduce customs duty, so that the price of raw materials will come down due to the arrival of goods from outside and people will get relief from the reduction in the price of the products, as well as many industrial units are on the verge of closure, they will also get a new life.
It is also very important to have industry in the priority of the government. Because this is such a sector which is the biggest medium of employment. In such a situation, the government should make the industry stand on its feet. The government needs to focus more on the development and convenience of credit facilities. Banks give loans at affordable rates and reduce GST rates. The rate of interest on loans from banks should be reduced. The government should spend more on infrastructure related projects and give more emphasis on agriculture sector so that raw material is accessible. Apart from this, banking license should be given to corporate, minimum alternate tax should be abolished and skill development should be promoted, which will bring huge relief to the industry.
Industry plays a major role in the economy of any country. Industry has always been providing strength to the economy of the country. Therefore, in the present times, there is a need to provide support to the faltering industry. Industry chambers say that the government should rationalize GST. Only three standard rates should be set, making them in line with global standards. The government should drastically cut the corporate tax rate. Along with this, the fiscal deficit of the government is reduced, if this situation improves, then surely the infrastructure sector will benefit strongly.
(Author is Jaisalmer based freelance writer, columnist and commentator. The views expressed are personal opinion of the author. He can be reached at Aleekhanbhaiya@gmail.com)