Informal sector warrants special focus, workers need fixed income support for 3 mths, say academics

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New Delhi, May 6 (PTI) The government should lay a special focus on supporting the informal sector as well as micro, small and medium enterprises to revive economic activities reeling from the coronavirus crisis, according to academics.

They also stressed the need for providing a fixed income support for at least three months to informal sector workers, saying they play a major part in running the economy. Addressing a webinar on 'Indian economy during COVID-19' on Wednesday, former professor of University of Hyderabad D Narasimba Reddy said the focus should be on the informal sector, which contributes significantly in the country's GDP.

He advocated that Rs 6,000 per month should be given to workers at least for the next three months so that they can sustain in these difficult times.

Reddy also called for supporting the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), adding that there is also a need to provide social security and employment security to workers.

Echoing similar views, former professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University Ravi S Srivastava said the informal economy is highly impacted due to the outbreak of the coronavirus and suggested steps like loan waiver for small entrepreneurs to help the SME sector.

University of Hyderabad Professor G Omkarnath said that using urban labour force will help in reviving the urban economy.

There is also a need to declog the credit channel, he added.

The webinar was organised by TRR Government Degree College, Prakasam district in Andhra Pradesh.

Professor Chirala Shankar Rao of the Department of Economics from this degree college said this webinar provided a platform to all the participants to share their views on the impact of COVID-19 on the Indian economy.

Among the other academicians participated in the webinar were M Ravi Kumar, Prajna Mishra from the University of Hyderabad, and N Trinad from Central university of Karnataka. PTI RR MKJ