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Migrants 'suffered' because of lack of any policy, constrained by absence of data

By Our Representative
A senior expert on migration has complained that the Government of India does not have database or policy for the migrants, whose numbers is likely to reach 650 million in 2021. Prof Irudaya Rajan, who is with the Centre for Development Studies, Thiruvananthapuram, told a webinar organized by the Impact and Policy Research Institute (IMPRI), New Delhi, that this is a major reason why migrants’ plight worsened during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Prof Rajan said, of the 650 million around 200 million are interstate or inter-district migrants, and of these, 140 million were actually working and have faced the main brunt of the lockdown. Of these around nine million resorted to “distress migration.”
Noting that there are policies for urbanization, the senior expert said, the government effort to ensure that the rural poor get jobs in rural areas has not been successful, as MGNREGA provides jobs only for 100 days, one reason why migrants are again being pushed back to cities. He wondered, what they will do in remaining 265 days to work.
Prof Shakti Kak, chairperson, Centre for Work and Welfare, IMPRI, taking a similar view, said, lack of data constrained policymakers from formulating a policy for migrants, pointing out, even schemes likes the Pradhan Mantri Gareeb Kalyan Yojna are not implemented properly, as seen by the fact that migrants are generally left out.
Prof RP Mamgai of the National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Hyderabad, predicted, about 80-90% of the migrants would be forced to return to cities. “State should have database of all the migrants including the minimum wage, working condition, social security’s benefits, among other indicators”, he demanded.

Comments

Jigyasa Sharma said…
Good session

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