XISS Ranchi: Sakshamaa, an initiative of Centre for Catalyzing Change (C3), and XISS Ranchi collaborated to organize a webinar on COVID-19, Migration and Women Workers.This webinar was the first in the Sakshamaa-XISS Webinar Series 2021. The motive was to improve the socio-economic condition of people from marginalized communities – especially women workers – living in low income states of eastern India.
Director, Xavier Institute of Social Service (XISS) Dr Marianus Kujur said that the pandemic which struck in March 2020 has shown a grim picture on the woes of women workers during the reverse migration phase across the country.
The situation of such migrant workers working under little social protection and livelihood security, especially women is heartbreaking. For more than a year now, the most affected have been migrant labourers from Jharkhand, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, and Odisha,” — Dr Marianus kujur
The joint effor of C3 and XISS
Dr. Aparajita Gogoi, Executive Director, Centre for Catalyzing Change (C3) gave an introduction about the webinar series and Dr. Yamini Atmavilas, SPO, Gender Equality, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation began the webinar.
Speakers of the webinar from Warwick University, UK were Dr. Clement Imbert, Associate Professor & Bhaskar Chakraborty, PhD Scholar who presented evidence on the short and long-term impact of the first COVID-19 wave on India’s rural youth. They said that most female workers simply dropped out of the labour force altogether and that there is a strong need for dedicated policies to ensure employment among youths, especially rural females.
The cross border opinion on migrant labourers
Johnson Topno, Regional Head of Programme, Phia Foundation highlighted the lack of employment, low income and other economic reasons which pushed females, especially from rural areas, to migrate to urban zones of the country exposing them to extreme vulnerabilities with regard to their dismal conditions of work in the informal sector.
Eminent panelists present during the webinar were Prof. Priya Deshingkar, University of Sussex, UK; Mr. Alex Paul Menon, IAS, Commissioner, Department of Labour, Government of Chhattisgarh and Dr. Neha Wadhawan, National Coordinator, Work in Freedom, ILO.
The vote of thanks was given by Dr Raj Shree Verma, Assistant Professor, XISS, Ranchi. The webinar was coordinated by Dr. Anamika Priyadarshini, Lead- Research, Sakshamaa-Bihar, Patna.