Migrant laborers are not an anomaly in Indian society and almost everybody is aware of their existence and the work they do. However, it is the current socioeconomic and health crisis brought on by the pandemic Covid-19 which has amplified our focus on these otherwise ignored migrant laborers and the difficulties they have to face. Social media, news as well as public opinion has varied greatly on the issue but there seems to be a consensus on the fact that India probably saw a great many deaths of these laborers before an equal number of people died due to Covid-19. Due to the sudden lockdown of all transport systems, lack of information and a great amount of mismanagement on the part of the states as well as central authority – many of these laborers have had to undertake inter-state journeys on foot with all their belongings on their shoulders. This has been extensively captured and documented by the media which has then shaped public opinion. In such a context where these migrant laborers are suddenly under the spotlight, Ranabir Samaddar and Samita Sen spoke in a webinar titled ‘CoVid-19 : Public Health and the Sudden Visibility of Migrant Workers’, organized by CRG (as part of its webinar series #bordersofanepidemic). Sukanya Bhattacharya reports on the webinar organized on 12th June, 2020.Continue reading “Report on ‘CoVid-19 : Public Health and the Sudden Visibility of Migrant Workers’”
Santi Sarkar and Khoka Mali write about the tea gardens in North Bengal, and the migrations that enable them. This articles takes into consideration the disparity in wages, in the payment of provident funds of the tea garden employees and the need for subsistence that send people out of the tea gardens, those who are the children of already migrant workers.Continue reading “Once a migrant, always a migrant: The multiple passages of tea plantation workers of north-Bengal”
Samata Biswas writes about the social distance India maintains from its migrant workers, redrawing the borders that govern our lives. Continue reading “Bringing the border home: India Partition 2020”
Swati Bhattacharjee and Abhijnan Sarkar take stock of the situation of two groups of migrant workers in Kolkata, and try to assess what could be done for them.
Madhurilata Basu and Sibaji Pratim Basu undertake a survey of the experiences of migrant healthcare workers and politics of communalisation that constitutes India’s response to the novel Coronavirus.
As part of CRG’s publication on the Covid 19 pandemic and migrant workers, Ishita Dey writes about migrants who perform intimate labour, perceived as a threat, embodying fear of spreading contamination, facing new challenges of ostracization and social stigma. Continue reading “Social Distancing, “Touch-Me-Not” and the Migrant Worker”
Aditi Mukherjee writes a report on the Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group conference dealing with protection system for refugees and migrants, organised in Kolkata, India, in November 2018. Continue reading “A conference on the State of the Global Protection System for Refugees and Migrants, 2018: Impressions and Outcomes”
This paper is a researcher’s travelogue. It narrates Snehashish Mitra’s journey to some of the towns and markets along the Mizoram-Myanmar border. The stories, of travel through the hills and valleys and encounter with the people and commodities, depict the porosity of the Indo-Myanmar border. These stories also draw our attention to issues like cross border migration, overlapping ethnicities and the nature of frontier urbanization in Mizoram. Continue reading “Mizoram Diary: Traversing the Frontiers”
In this piece, Sanam Roohi critically explores the notion and praxis/implications of migrant led development in the country of origin, in this context India. Going beyond the dominant discourse of studying this process through remittances, she argues there is need to delve deep into the multifarious ways a migrant is associated to the place of origin. A transnational perspective thus entails a grasp on the complexities of migrant resource flows and exchanges. Continue reading “Understanding migrant resource flows and its relation to ‘development’ of migrant sending regions: Evidence from South India”