The Poor Can’t Work From Home, Now Face Risks to Health & Income

by Shatakshi Gupta

We all by now are very well aware of this widespread virus SARS – CoV 2, which is actually taking away so many lives around the world.

India is too reporting the increase in the number of cases of people who are infected by COVID – 19. This continuous increase in number though is gradual but if we actually want to prevent it from moving into its community stage then we all have to take stringent actions to control it.

In this direction the governments of different states are taking all the necessary steps through which any kind of public gatherings could actually be avoided like postponing exams of schools, also now many of them who are working in various offices are been directed to work from their homes and also the colleges as well as the universities are too being shut for the time being.

But here when we are talking about the employees and the laborers then how will we not count the poor which includes vegetable sellers or vendors, daily wage laborers, cab drivers, security guards and so on. Though they are too vulnerable to this infection they can not sit back at home or rather they also can not work from home. They have to come out for earning their daily wage so that they can eat food.

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Loss – Loss Situation

This disease is actually a greater matter of concern for these poor who have to come out of their houses despite being aware of this highly contagious virus, despite being aware of the fact that their lives too are in danger.

All of these vendors, as well as these vegetable sellers, have to earn not only for themselves but also for their families. Barely do they earn 600 – 700 rupees per day where they also had to spend it daily for feeding their families. For them, it is actually just like being trapped or rather being caught in the middle of the rock and the hard place.

Thus, this is actually completely a Loss – Loss situation for these poor people.

With Kerchiefs as Makeshift ‘Masks’, Work Goes On

All these people are continuously doing their jobs, just by wearing over their masks or even their handkerchiefs on their very faces while working. This is the minimal precaution which they are actually able to take while they are working.

There was a vegetable vendor named Sangeeta, she was actually repeatedly using the same masks for several days. Also, she says that she would buy a new mask only when the one she is using is worn or torn out.

As per what had been told by the doctors, these regular medical face masks can actually not protect an individual from this coronavirus. The N95 masks, which are actually effective, are notably much more expensive, where one piece may cost somewhere between Rs 300 to 400, thus it actually becomes beyond the means of many of these workers.

Social Distancing: Weighted by Privilege

As the maximum number of cases are being reported in Maharashtra, so following this on Tuesday, Maharashtra government’s cabinet actually had a comprehensive dialogue over the issue that whether Mumbai should be placed under a virtual lockdown. There are actually still doubts about that whether the local trains and the metro service would be halted as well.

It is actually very much clear now that the country is actually facing a lot more challenges because the unorganized sector of this country is unable to practice Social Distancing which is actually the most crucial step to be taken by all of us to keep ourselves away from that vulnerability. There may be some who can work from their very homes but now greater emphasis must also be laid upon this unorganised sector or poor people so that they can also carry out that practice of social distancing.