India Lockdown: I Know The Risk Of Coronavirus, But I Can’t See My Children Hungry

Hanima Anand |Mar 25, 2020

Yesterday, PM Narendra Modi ordered a total lockdown during 21 days to stop the spread of coronavirus in the country. This is to save people’s lives but accidentally endanger many.

When the number of confirmed cases in India is increasing exponentially, the government has decided to order a total India lockdown on 1.3 billion population to halt the spread of the deadly virus.

Many people praise this decision which can help to save hundred lives amid the complex situation of coronavirus pandemic. However, they may not know many others are being endangered when the door is shut.

Coronavirus India Lockdown
India is officially in total lockdown for 21 days.

They are daily-wage earners who rely on the little amount of money paid each day to survive. They are manual workers who are hired in construction sites or shops which are now closed during the lockdown.

Their only source of income is gone.

Sharing on the situation in an interview with BBC, a labour in Uttar Pradesh said:

“I earn 600 rupees everyday and I have five people to feed. We will run out of food in a few days. I know the risk of coronavirus, but I can’t see my children hungry.”

Indian Poor During Lockdown
To them, hunger causes a quicker death than coronavirus. Photo credit: BBC

Another worker in Allahabad – Kishan Lal also shared that he earned no money since last week. This clearly threatens his family life more than the coronavirus, at least for now.

Though the government has promised to help daily-wage earners by transferring money to their bank accounts, things didn’t get better.

>>> What worst can happen? American Experts Predict 800 Million Indian People Might Be Infected With Coronavirus

Most of these people work in informal sectors, ranging from cleaners, street vendors, rickshaw pullers to garbage collectors. They don’t have any kind of insurance or bank account.

They totally depend on cash to feed their entire family daily.

Cobber During Indian Lockdown
This cobber doesn't know why the railway station is empty. Photo credit: BBC

Check how these Indian people react to the total lockdown of the government, collected by BBC news.

Kishan Lal – rickshaw puller in Allahabad:

“I need to earn to feed my family. I have heard that the government is going to give us money, though I have no idea when and how.”

Ali Hassan – cleaner in a shop in Allahabad:

“The shop shut down 2 days ago and I haven’t been paid. I don’t know when it will open. I am very scared. I have a family, how am I going to feed them.”

Mohammed Sabir – owner of a food stall in Delhi:

“Now I can’t pay them. I don’t have any money. My family earns some money from farming in my village but their crops were damaged this year due to hailstorms, so they were looking at me for support. I feel so helpless. I fear that hunger may kill many like us before coronavirus.”

Tejpal Kashyap – photographer in Delhi

"Last two weeks were bad, even when there was no lockdown. There were hardly any tourists. Now I can’t even go back to my village and I can’t even work. I am stuck here in Delhi and constantly worried about my family in my village in Uttar Pradesh.”

The final person who was interviewed is a cobber at the railway station in Allahabad. He has polished people’s shoes for years but he said “nobody is showing up now. I don’t know what is happening.”

These people do not have access to the media, nor they can rely on other income sources to get by the India lockdown.

The next few weeks would be the most challenging time for the entire India which requires timely support from the government and the reunion of the public.

>>> Related post on Everyone Stays Home During Coronavirus Pandemic, What About The Homeless?


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