‘Prolonged lockdown may push millions into margins of subsistence’

MUMBAI: A prolonged lockdown may possibly push millions of Indians into the "margins of subsistence", former RBI Governor Duvvuri Subbarao said on Sunday while expecting a 'V' curved recovery once the COVID-19 crisis ends and the turnaround in India to be faster than some economies.

He was participating in a webinar on "History repeats - but differently- Lessons for the post Corona World," organised by the Manthan Foundation here, in which former Deputy Governor of RBI Usha Thorat took part.

"Because most analysts believe that this year India will actually have negative growth or growth will contract. We must remember that even ahead of the crisis two months ago our growth slowed. Now it has completely stopped.

Last year growth was five%. Just imagine, five% growth last year and we are going to negative or zero growth this year, a decline of five% growth," he said. "It is true that India is going to perform in this crisis better than most other countries.

But that is no consolation.... Because we are a very poor country and if the crisis persists and if the lockdown is not lifted soon enough, it is quite possible that millions of people will be pushed into the margins of subsistence, he said when asked about his views on the present situation. Subbarao said that as predicted by analysts, India will have a V shaped recovery which is far better than most of the other countries.

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