[WSMDiscuss] Caste and COVID-19 Pandemic

Umakant uk4in at yahoo.co.in
Thu Apr 1 19:18:00 CEST 2021

Dear Friends

Greetings! Attachedhere you will find an article by Kanthi Swaroop and Dr. Joel Lee examining howdiscriminatory & exclusionary practices as prevalent in Indian Societystill governs the lives of Sanitation workers even during COVID-19 pandemicsituations. 


On the second web-linkalso mentioned below you could download a report prepared by Water Aid Indiaand its partner organization detailing what kinds of problems were faced bysanitation workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. 


These write-upsshould force everyone who believes in liberty, equality and fraternity and alife of dignity for everyone, to re-channelize our efforts to hold the Stateand society at large accountable and become more sensitive towards the rightsof the most disadvantaged sections of our society. 


Do pass it on toothers in your circle/network.    


Casteand COVID-19 

Noteson Sanitation in a Pandemic

Kanthi Swaroop andJoel Lee, Economic and Political Weekly

Volume: 56, Issue No.13, March 27, 2021 



Thearticle looks at on-ground shifts in patterns of how the state and generalpublic are treating sanitation workers, during the COVID-19 pandemic.Based on interviews with sanitation workers in Hyderabad and Lucknow, threetrajectories are identified in municipal and societal reactionsto COVID-19. A variability is seen in how state and society respond in theface of renewed caste-based stigma underscored by inaction on the part of thestate to concretely recognise sanitation workers’ rights.




Health, Safety and Social SecurityChallenges of Sanitation Workers during the COVID-19 Pandemic in India

Sanitationworkers already face several health and safety risks, financial challenges andstigma due to the nature of their work and caste-based and gender-baseddiscrimination. The COVID-19 pandemic has further added to theirvulnerabilities.


Download the Report 





With Regards 

Umakant, Ph. D 

New Delhi 


My final words of advice to you are educate, agitate and organize; have faith in yourself. With justice on our side I do not see how we can lose our battle. The battle to me is a matter of joy. The battle is in the fullest sense spiritual. There is nothing material or social in it. For ours is a battle not for wealth or for power. It is battle for freedom. It is the battle of reclamation of human personality. 
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