Opinion: Economic Revival During COVID-19 Lockdown

By Swami Adipurushananda

The Pandemic has forced almost the entire world to shut, India too is passing through its lockdown phase in order to contain the pandemic caused by COVID19. The state governments under the direction of central government are working hard to contain the virus, while researchers, scientists and economists are planning for the future course of action. As a monk I am sharing my observations time to time, here are few points which has come to my notice and I think they need utmost attention.

Psychology of common man during Lockdown – Common man (Working Man) is becoming frustrated and desperate being cooped up in their homes for more than 3 weeks. Work will be a great relief in this hour and they would not mind working for more than 12-14 hrs per day for consecutive 15 days.

The paradigm of the Economy needs to be shifted from Market-based to Inventory based – The essential items of consumption are getting depleted at a tremendous rate. So, stockpiling of those commodities and their ancillary products is necessary. So, production should not stop as and when this lockdown phase passes there will be a huge demand for products and not having enough stock will create a bottleneck, sending the economy to the vicious circle of poverty. And in this global market, any kind of stockpile will have demand in some country or other, bringing revenues to foreign exchequer. And since people don’t have much demand right now due to lack of spending avenues, payments to the workers can be given in a lesser amount with future earnings.

3) Implementation of the essence of the above two concepts:

  1. The Prime Minister need to interact with the Entrepreneurs to convince them of the Idea.
  2. The COVID-19 spreads through human movement, so, all the workers of the respective Industry need to work and stay at the same campus. But before bringing them to campus each one of them should be tested in a quarantine facility as approved by the Government. And I am sure a bit of hardship will be accepted wholeheartedly by the workers towards their accommodation and fooding. Now instead of working 8 hrs. they can work for more than 12-14 hrs.
  3. Their food can be provided by food industry like IRCTC in sanitized food packets.
  4. Logistics should also be treated as another industry, where social distancing can be followed. Since, the roads are empty and authorized vehicles are moving only, transportation time will also get reduced. Now migrant daily wage laborers are cooped in   schools and other kind of shelters as provided by the State. They all can be utilized for loading unloading etc., they will not surely mind the income during this hour of calamity.
  5. And suddenly the production chain has started though in halting manner, as the workers need to be sent home after 10-12 days for de-stressing. But the industry has worked more than 20 days of work.

These are few ideas, while at the battlefield many problems may arise, but the most important thing is the psychology of human beings particularly the front line workers must remain undisturbed. We need to channelize the strength being cooped up and not let it turn into something dark or depressing.

Swami Adipurushananda

Author Rev Swami Adipurushananda (Biswajit Maharaj) is associated with Ramakrishna Mission Institute of Culture, Educational and Cultural Centre of Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission. Started in the year 1938, the Institute occupies a significant place for its Cultural, Philanthropic, and Educational activities for the promotion of mutual understanding and goodwill among all sections of people. Harmony of faith is the cultural theme. It disseminates the message of universal oneness.