Nirmala Sitharaman, Finance minister, Government of India, has announced financial support to more than 11,000 registered tourist guides/travel and tourism stakeholders through the loan guarantee scheme for COVID-affected sectors. The scheme will cover 10,700 regional level tourist guides recognised by ministry of tourism and those recognised by state governments. It will also cover travel and tourism stakeholders (TTS) recognised by Ministry of tourism. Loans will be provided with 100 per cent guarantee up to Rs 10 lakh for TTS and Rs 1 lakh for tourist guides licensed at regional or state level. She also said that the first five lakh tourist visas that will be issued – once issuance is restarted – for free. These announcements are part of eight measures declared by the centre as relief for the COVID-hit national economy.