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Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Covid effect in Delhi: Common man’s earnings dipped 20K a year

City’s economy expected to shrink by 5.68% but recovery on horizon, says economic survey; Delhi Budget out today

Written by Sourav Roy Barman | New Delhi |
March 9, 2021 3:10:32 am
The capital’s per capita income dipped by 7.53% in 2020-21 (as per constant prices), according to the economic survey. The dip in annual earnings or the per capita income reflects the impact of the pandemic on the common people. (Photo: Archive)

The economy of the national capital is expected to shrink by 5.68% in 2020-21 while the annual earnings of its residents dipped by over Rs 20,000 a year owing to the “unparalleled effect” of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the Delhi economic survey released Monday.

Presenting the survey report during the first day of the Delhi Assembly’s budget session, Finance Minister Manish Sisodia said the pandemic caused “great disruption” in the government’s activities and its revenue collections witnessed a sharp dip due to the fear of the virus and measures taken to contain its spread.

According to the survey, the advance estimate of Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) of Delhi (constant prices) in 2020-21 was Rs 5,78,971 crore against Rs 6,13,841 crore in 2019-20 — a contraction of 5.68%. It had risen 7.10% between 2018-19 and 2019-20.

“The year 2020 witnessed unrivalled turmoil with the Covid-19 virus and the resultant pandemic emerging as the biggest threat to economic growth in a century. The pandemic has been unique in its wide-ranging effects on almost every section of the economy and society. The pandemic impacts both supply and demand in the economy. The public health measures, adopted to contain the spread, engendered sizable immediate economic costs as they led to almost full suspension of economic activity, curbed consumption and investment, as well as restricted labor supply and production,” states the survey report.

GSDP is essentially the annual total market value of all goods and services in the economy. GSDP at constant prices, measured against a base year, factors in price changes either due to inflation or deflation.

The dip in annual earnings or the per capita income reflects the impact of the pandemic on the common people. While an average Delhiite earned Rs 2.74 lakh annually (constant prices) in 2019-20, it reduced to Rs 2.54 lakh in 2020-21 (advance estimate), registering a dip of 7.53 per cent, states the survey. In terms of current prices, the per capita income has been pegged at Rs 3.54 lakh in 2020-21 as against Rs 3.76 lakh in 2019-20. Delhi’s per capita income is nearly three times the national average.

As reported by The Indian Express, the Delhi government’s socio-economic survey, carried out between November 2018 and November 2019 covering over 1 crore households, had found that 47.31% households in Delhi spend between Rs 10,000-Rs 25,000 each month, whereas 42.5% incur a monthly expenditure of Rs 10,000 or below.

On the brighter side, the survey report states that a “sharp recovery” and double digit growth of the GSDP caused by a robust recovery in services sector, consumption, and investment have been rekindled “by the initiation of a mega vaccination drive, a low base effect and inherent strengths of the economy”.

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