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Only 31% of Delhi’s informal workers got rations, 54% still have no ration cards: CPM survey

The Times of India logo The Times of India 30-07-2021 Swati Mathur
a close up of many different types of food © Provided by The Times of India

NEW DELHI: Only 31% poor residents of the national capital got 10 kilogram rations during the second wave of coronavirus pandemic, while 54% still do not have ration cards, a survey conducted by the CPM in New Delhi has shown.

Releasing the survey on Friday, CPM leader and polit buro member Brinda Karat said the survey emphasised the urgent need for cash transfer of Rs 7500 per month and that the need of the hour not door-to-door ration but house-to-house survey and walk-in registration centres for those who need ration cards in Delhi.

The survey was conducted by CPM Delhi State Committee and covered 1917 workers in the Delhi-NCR region during the first two weeks of June.

In this survey, information was collected on three major aspects, including the impact of the second wave on employment conditions, exposure of working class households to Covid-19 during the second wave and the burden of health expenditure on these households due to Covid. The survey also assessed the access households have to subsidised food grain during the second wave.

Professor Vikas Rawal of JNU, who assisted the survey, said major findings of the survey included a “devastating impact” of the second wave on leaving the majority population without employment, a significant proportion of them battling Covid infections and having to incur higher out-of-pocket expenditure on health than their earnings during the period.

The survey shows that 54% of the respondents did not have ration cards and up to 78% have not been administered even a single shot of vaccine.

Additionally, about 65% of the respondents had no employment at all in April and May, while even the rest faced considerable loss of employment. About 14% of them did not find any work for more than 30 days in two months. Nearly 6% did not find any work for 15-30 days in two months.

The survey also shows that the loss of employment was worst among casual workers. About 72% of those who worked as casual workers before the second wave had no employment at all during April and May, while about 52% self-employed skilled workers were completely unemployed during April and May.

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