The pandemic dealt a devastating blow to the economy at global level. Not just the macroeconomics, but even the most localised economic indicators reflect ravaging effects of this pandemic. The way people, organisations, corporates, and governments were hit, is just unprecedented. The loss to economy has been colossal, to put it in a nutshell. During this year governments around the world tried to inject extra doses of fiscal energy into the economies to minimise the effects of the lockdown. All governments around the world tried to do it depending upon the size and capacity of their economies. India also tried to bolster the confidence of markets and also prop up the crumbling segments of the economy. The fiscal stimuli were also directed to safeguard the livelihood at the most basic level of economic activities. That was all firefighting. Now that we are expecting an end to this pandemic as the vaccine has been rolled out, we need to think long term.
If the vaccination programme unfolds well, and the desired targets are achieved, the economic activities will once again start picking up like before. Though there are dangers still lurking behind that the virus might play a spoilsport once again, the leadership at the apex level need to think about reviving the economy in a hopeful atmosphere, while remaining in a state of preparedness, in case some thing goes wrong. While keeping a vigil on the ongoing effects of the pandemic, now is the time to lift the economy in a big way. The union budget is the most crucial instrument to do that. One can hope that the target of reviving the confidence of markets, and bringing economy back on rails in a big way, happens sooner than later. People who suffered during this pandemic are in need of relief, and that can only happen if the economic activities pick up, and the private sector lifts-off. It is time that the spending in the government and also at corporate level factors in the hardships faced by common people during this pandemic.