India has seen one of the strictest and longest lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While having disastrous effects on many and the economy, the lockdown has also specifically affected India’s migrant worker population. India’s informal economy employs more than 80 percent of the non-agricultural workforce, and the agricultural sector is itself highly dependent on migrants. Yet, workers have been forced to leave or remain stranded in overcrowded relief camps.
While India’s government set up a relief package of nearly $23 billion specifically for migrant workers and the urban poor, the conditions keep many from availing these benefits. Could impact finance help?