This recommendations has been prepared with the inputs of individuals, organisations and academics who have engaged in Covid-19 relief work during the lockdown and have directly worked with low wage workers, farmers, urban poor and livelihoods groups . It reflects the collective hope of  people who are keen on a clean, green, just and sustainable India.

Green Recommendations:


The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged many aspects of our economic and social life fundamentally. We witnessed a significant breakdown of food security and livelihood systems across the country. Millions of people lost their jobs, and struggled for access to food for prolonged periods. Farmers were confronted with the labour crisis during the peak harvesting season. Many farmers had to struggle1 very badly to access the market/consumers for their products. The economic  crisis2 has further deepened in the last few months.

As the crisis played out, over the lockdown months, there were reports of reduction in air pollution, anecdotes of people reporting clear skies and recovering habitats, and relatively cleaner air3 in our cities and homes. Water quality of our rivers improved significantly4. Butterflies, birds, honey bees and many other under stress species could be seen even in the otherwise congested and polluted big cities. These months have allowed us to experience a completely different environment, seemingly a system that was healing itself. The easing of the lockdown is seeing a reversal of many of these changes that we noticed in the ecological health of our nation.

In considering the stimulus packages needed for rapid and sustained economic and social recovery, it is time to make a conscious decision whether we want to move in a direction which takes us back to the old normal or move towards a better future? A choice has to be made between a system that has been exposed as unviable and ineffective or move towards a better future, which leads us to an economically and ecologically just, sustainable and resilient future. At the same time being wise on continuing or strengthening those systems which either helped in the past or continue to do so. A future which ensures equity and justice for all. A future that has hope of welfare and wellbeing for all as an integral to it.

The future choices should foreground inclusive, holistic and comprehensive systematic changes which make us resilient and responsive to further environmental, economic or health crises of even greater magnitude than Covid-19. The plan based on a green stimulus should address both short-term economic decline and rise to the challenge of realising the economy’s and the planet’s long-term recovery potential. The recovery pathway must reflect the resolve towards mitigating and ameliorating climate change issues. We have to act to mitigate the revelations made in the first ever, climate change assessment report5 titled, “Assessment of Climate Change over the Indian Region” and acknowledge the reality that along with the economic decline, dangerous climate change poses a permanent and far more serious threat to human development and prosperity in India.

Recommendations for Action

Listed below are key areas for action for the Government of India to ensure inclusive, sustainable and socially just recovery from this crisis towards better.

Clean Energy and Transportation for Clean Air

Fossil fuel burning is a major component of the hazardous air pollution problem facing virtually all cities in the country. In contrast, renewable energy technologies use much less water, do not generate air pollution, and generate more employment along the value chain, in a more decentralized manner.

Clean Energy

Clean Transport

Living Soils for Resilient Future

Empowered Farmers for the Safety and Security of Food

These recommendations reflect collective hope and confidence that the government will consider these areas seriously to turn this crisis into an opportunity and set the direction firmly towards building a climate-proof, equal, sustainable and resilient India as we emerge from this pandemic.