The PM- Narendra Modi on the 13th day of the 21 day nation-wide lock down conducted a cabinet meeting over video conferencing. This was a very crucial meeting since it took stock of the current COVID -19 scenarios from different parts of India and also discussed future measures to be adopted to tackle this pandemic. This was a first of its kind virtual meeting, and was done as a precautionary measure to prevent any risks of infection. The earlier cabinet meeting a few days back was conducted by practicing social distancing and was done by being physically present but being seated apart at safe distances.
The possibility of India exiting from the lock-down period was discussed and a staggered approach by opening up areas that were not the hot spots of the disease gradually was suggested, or in other words a phased opening up was speculated. Pointers to tackle the remaining period of the lockdown were laid out.
The make in India initiative was again emphasized by the PM to rule out the dependence on the other nations. The other key points included adopting a business continuity plan to mitigate the crisis and boosting manufacturing and export and become self- dependent. The use of truck aggregators was another important point that was brought up.
PM Modi congratulated his party on the 40th Anniversary of the party’s foundation while the ministers appreciated the PM’s #9pm9 minutes initiative conducted successfully
The Prime Minister gave a 5 point action plan to the ministers, which include the following:
Ensuring that no poor person goes hungry and the party workers must ensure proper food and ration for the poor, He said the use of masks was very important and while they should cover their faces, they must also carry and give out masks to people who weren’t wearing one. He asked them to send out appreciation messages to all the Health workers who were front line soldiers and helping to battle the COVID-19 crisis with dedication and determination. They were told to set up the Aarogya Setu app and tell 40 other people to do so and lastly he urged them to donate liberally to the PM CARES fund that was set up to help battle the COVID- 19 crisis.
In a gesture of magnanimity and to show their solidarity with the Nation a 30 % cut for one year in the Salaries of MP’s was announced and this would be put in the Corona battle fund. The MPLAD fund was also cancelled for 2 years.
Union Minister Prakash Javdekar announced that as a social responsibility measure the President, Vice President, governors of states will also take a pay cut.
This cabinet decision was welcomed by all and accepted willingly by concerned.