Impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on domestic workers: the case of an extended suburb of Mumbai

Authors: Sujayita Bhattacharjee*, University of Mumbai
Topics: Urban Geography, Economic Geography, Social Geography
Keywords: Domestic workers, Hardships, Lockdown, Pandemic
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/7/2021
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:15 AM
Room: Virtual 38
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

The COVID-19 pandemic has left no section of the society untouched, nor has its impact remained limited to the spreading of the virus. The pandemic has caused a series of impacts that have shaken humanity in many ways. The socio-economic impact of the pandemic in India became evident soon after the lockdown when people involved in the informal sectors of the economy emerged as the main sufferers of the socio-economic crisis. The loss of informal livelihoods emerged as a major concern amidst the lockdown. The domestic workers comprise a major category of informal workers, who became impacted severely as a result of the lockdown imposed to control the progress of the pandemic in India. In this study, an attempt has been made to analyze the impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on the domestic workers and to examine how their livelihood and survivability became threatened under the given scenario. The study has been carried out in Titwala, an extended suburb of Mumbai, which has emerged as one of the preferred residential areas of Mumbai Metropolitan Region. With the growth of real-estate and the increasing number of households in the area, many domestic workers have come to be employed in them informally. However, with the pandemic and lockdown, these domestic workers have faced tremendous hardships and struggles. Considering this, the present study takes up the case of domestic workers, an underrepresented section of society, and delves into their predicament during the lockdown.

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