89% people have zero weekly income: Chidambaram
New Delhi, May 17 2020 - Congress leader and former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram has slammed the central government for the plight of the migrants, citing media reports.
Chidambaram, citing news reports, tweeted that nearly 89 per cent people have zero weekly income during the lockdown. "University of Chicago and University of British Columbia research find weekly income of 89.2 per cent is down to zero."
He said migrants in search of jobs come to cities, now their livelihood a huge concern as they go back.
The former finance minister said people are walking to their homes in distress and many say that they want to reach home as there is no way to feed themselves in cities.
Chidambaram said that Azim Premji and Venu Srinivasan support cash transfer of Rs 5000/7000 a month to each poor household and migrant worker for at least 3 months.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, in a statement on Saturday, advocated again for direct cash transfer. He had said, "52 days have passed since India was put under lockdown. On one hand, the Nation is fighting Covid-19 and on the other, our farmers, migrant labourers, shopkeepers, salaried classes and small & medium industries i.e. MSMEs are facing an unprecedented economic crisis."
"Extend 'Income Support' to at least 13 crore poorest households. Transfer Rs 7,500 preferably to each household. Even if Rs 5,000 is transferred to each of the 13 crore households, it will amount to a total of only Rs 65,000 crore, which we can afford," he had added.
The Government is duty bound to ensure the safe return of all our migrant brothers and sisters to their homes, free of cost. Steps must be taken for their protection and wellbeing and to ensure that they are treated with dignity and respect, the statement had said.