This section hosts guidelines, manuals and toolkits to strengthen public health practice.
The Covid-19 global pandemic and its associated containment measures have taken a heavy toll on economies and societies worldwide. A number of surveys clearly show that livelihoods have been devastated at unprecedented levels. Food insecurity and economic vulnerability have increased to staggering proportions. Hunger deaths and suicides linked to economic stress are being reported from various parts of the country. This study presents findings from a survey of nearly 5,000 self-employed, casual, and regular wage workers across 12 states of India, conducted between 13 April and 23 May in collaboration with civil society organizations.
The study found a massive increase in unemployment and an equally dramatic fall in earnings. Two thirds of our respondents have lost work. The few informal workers who were still employed during the lockdown saw their earnings drop by more than half. An overwhelming majority of farmers could not sell their produce or had to sell at lower prices. Kharif crop is likely to be impacted adversely as farmers have depleted their savings which would have been used as capital for seeds and fertilizers. Casual and self-employed workers were the worst impacted. Findings also include, about half of the wage workers received no salary or reduced salary during the lockdown. Almost 8 in 10 are eating less food than before. More than 6 in 10 respondents in urban areas did not have enough money for weeks worth of essentials. More than a third of all respondents had taken a loan to cover expenses during the lockdown.
More than 8 in 10 respondents did not have money to pay next month's rent. The report also highlights measures that can provide immediate relief, increase demand in the short-run and contribute towards longer-run productivity increases with respect to enhancing food security, providing income support (cash transfers), supporting MSMEs, and aiding migrant workers.