Item Link: Access the Resource
Media Type: Article - Recent
Author(s): Sunita Narain
Newspaper: Down to Earth
Events are moving so fast in our world. It was just two weeks ago that I wrote how the economic collapse because of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) had made the invisible, visible. I wrote about the images of migrant labourers that haunt us, who made their way from villages to cities for jobs and are now walking back home because of job loss — often dying and collapsing with hunger.
Since then, the migrant crisis has made its way into our homes; into our living rooms; and, into our consciousness like never before. We have seen them; we have felt their pain; and, we have wept when we heard how tired migrants sleeping on train tracks were crushed to death by an incoming train. More and more of such cases have come to light — we are all traumatised. I know.
But it is also important to note that their pain has not gone unnoticed — the government has started trains to bring migrants back home; it has done this knowing there is danger that the contagion might spread to villages. But it knows that there is also anguish to go home. It had to respond. I can say that as yet, all these efforts, including the move to provide free food to the returning people, is still too little — much more needs to be done to take them home with dignity and to provide them with wherewithal to survive in the coming months…