Abhijit Banerjee On Money Transfers Amid Covid-19


'If You Tell The Poor...': Abhijit Banerjee On Cash Transfers Amid Covid

Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee mentioned MGNREGA work days needs to be raised to 150 days


New Delhi:

Some of the efficient methods to assist the poor get better from the crippling financial results of the COVID-19 pandemic is to extend the variety of work days below the federal government’s flagship jobs scheme from 100 to 150 days, Nobel laureate Abhijit Banerjee has instructed NDTV.

Mr Banerjee mentioned the federal government assume tank NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar’s view that direct money handouts to the poor do not improve demand is a mistaken manner to have a look at the issue.

“That (transferring massive amount of money to the poor) would actually be a greater thought. The federal government should guarantee employment below MGNREGA. It have to be elevated from 100 to 150 days,” Mr Banerjee instructed NDTV in an interview.

On the NITI Aayog Vice Chairman’s view on why the poor save and never drive up demand, the Nobel laureate mentioned, “…See, if you’ll inform the poor that it’s the final assist they’re getting, then they’re truly going to reserve it. That is why I speak about assurance and MGNREGA.”

The Mahatma Gandhi Nationwide Rural Employment Assure Act (MGNREGA) offers monetary safety in rural areas by giving no less than 100 days of employment.

“The individuals who have gone under the poverty line (after the pandemic reached India) had been truly the individuals who had been simply above the poverty line earlier… It is absolutely one thing that is not excellent news, however it will not take a lot for them to return to regular. I feel the true query lies with the revival of the financial system,” Mr Banerjee mentioned.


“If the sectors – lodge, manufacturing, development – the place unskilled labourers are employed are revived rapidly, then the scenario could enhance,” he mentioned.

Evaluating India’s money switch programmes with different nations, the Nobel laureate mentioned most unemployed folks within the US will get $600 per week.

“That is some huge cash. In France, everybody who misplaced their job is being supported by the federal government. The European Central Financial institution is thought to be very conservative, but they went with doing no matter it takes. They really printed cash to distribute it,” Mr Banerjee mentioned, echoing what banker Uday Kotak instructed NDTV final month about the necessity to print money to assist the financial system that has been broken by the protracted COVID-19 disaster.


Some 230 million Indians fell into poverty because of the pandemic final 12 months with younger folks and girls the toughest hit, and the second wave threatens to make issues even worse, a examine by the Bengaluru-based Azim Premji College mentioned final month. The months-long lockdown from final March put round 100 million folks out of labor, with round 15 per cent unable to search out jobs even by the top of the 12 months, the examine mentioned.

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