India is indulged in a responsive fight against coronavirus since mid-March 2020. But we have largely forgotten about the other factors that are causing deaths amidst the lockdown? Studies lead to an analysis that our country might witness a greater number of non-virus deaths by the end of the lockdown. This is a reflection of poor management of crisis while dealing with a deadly virus. There are severe unnoticed effects of the lockdown on the vulnerable section of the population. We need immediate and quick actions to tackle the deaths unrelated to COVID-19 because deaths due to unemployment are rising.
India spotted the first COVID-19 case on January 31st, 2020, and currently has 1,58,000 cases. The gradual increase in the number of cases has spread terror across the borders. The lockdown was announced on 24th March 2020 and is extended up to 31st May 2020. More than two months of unemployment have to lead to financial debt for many.
Unemployment Rate of India
Every citizen of India is traumatized by the fact that the consequences of the lockdown might be challenging. The unemployment rate upsurged from 8.8% in March to an outstanding number of 24.8% in the last few weeks. The estimation states that very 1 amongst 6 people of the working-age will be unemployed post lockdown. India has a strong force of 500-million working population, stuck with unregulated jobs and businesses. The irregularity of businesses has dejected the lives of millions amid the lockdown.
Lockdown glorified stories of the utter helplessness of people due to dissimilar reasons. The hindrance of necessities posed as an impossible barrier to penetrate. More than 300 people lost lives dealing with the nation-wide lockdown. Deaths due to unemployment are increasingly rising.
Since all the doctors are employed as combatants to fight the novel coronavirus, healthcare access for other illnesses is almost impossible. Chronic diseases like HIV, tuberculosis, etc patients are facing a challenging situation due to lack of medication.
The Suffering of Migrant Workers
Migrant workers and daily wagers are suffering from unemployment. This is due to the shutdown of construction sites and all other industries. Running out of savings and no course of action led to thousands of migrant workers taking the road back to their hometowns. In the absence of public transport, many walked, cycled to compass their way back home. During the course of action, many lost their lives adhering to hunger, starvation, exhaustion, and many other humanitarian reasons.
India imposed a strict lockdown but turned a blind to the basic necessities of the vulnerable section of society. The worsening situation has shattered hopes of many. Lockdown led to many homeless citizens due to a lack of money. Many do not have the money to pay for food and assigned supplies did not make its way to save such innocent lives. This is the very reason for deaths due to unemployment.
The other vulnerable section is the dependent working class. The domestic helpers, drivers, laundry owners, iron shop owners are in a miserable condition without any relief. The fear of infection led to the loss of jobs. People are following social distancing religiously. The fear of uncertainty and running out of savings has pushed many into depression and anxiety. We have lost many lives due to the extreme conditions of mental stress. Some were unable to detect the problem and many failed to afford the treatment for the distress caused by the pandemic.
Deaths Due to Addiction
Denied access to alcohol also witnessed a surprising number of deaths. Addiction to alcohol is a fatal condition and coping mechanism is weak, moreover detrimental. The shortage of alcohol supplies led to people committing suicide. This was a piece of unexpected news amid the spread of the deadly novel coronavirus.
Unorganized planning of the finer and important details is the root cause of unpredicted loss of lives. The most affected are migrant workers. Hard endeavours to reach home without any money and basic supplies is a traumatizing condition. Finding jobs and livelihood in rural India is a task of unforeseen results. Some may find work but many may not. Their return to cities is a far-fetched idea because of the miserable conditions they have been thorough. We have more deaths due to unemployment than any other reason.
India ranked 102 on the Global Hunger Index in 2019 without any economic crisis. Loss of jobs has worsened the situation in every sector. The downfall of employment will be greater war than COVID-19. The economic crisis of 2020 has challenged India with scanty plans and resources. The future of a million lives is uncertain to date.
The country needs to curb deaths due to unemployment in India.