Exodus of a Couple Million Migrants
The lack of significant welfare for migrants or stimulus for the failing economy left the vulnerable helpless.
First, we saw the knee-jerk national lock down trigger an exodus of a couple million hungry poor unpaid migrants across the country from the cities they worked for but did not receive care from. Some who died on the way. Others were beaten, hosed down, civil liberties trampled underfoot by hooligans and criminals. The lack of significant welfare for migrants or stimulus for the failing economy left the vulnerable helpless.
Now as the national lock down is partially lifted without adequate preparation, we have seen desperate attempts by migrants to go home at all costs. Local governments and civil society are now desperate to manage the situation, but the lack of preparation is appalling. And inexcusable.
So, we have migrants sleeping on train tracks. These are the people who build our cities. And we are the Pharaohs & the Egyptians who benefit from their back breaking labour. If the moral arc of the universe bends towards justice, all of us and our descendants are on moral notice.
Ajoy Varghese is a Thinker based in Bangalore.
Photo by Nikhil M Kumar on Unsplash