Why Is India starving and dying in corona virus lockdown?
The lockdown in India is affecting the middle and low income groups the most. Without any sustained income, many that are suffering from other issues like alcoholism and betting issues are resorting to taking their own lives.
Farmer suicides are being reported. They are taking their own lives as they cannot find laborers to harvest their crops. Ripe crop is going waste and it driving farmers to rage and death. Superstition and people are letting older people die into their homes, with the fear of contracting the virus.
Political analysts believe that India was not ready for a draconian lockdown with just three days notice. The lockdown, they say, has been implemented without making prior arrangements, proper provisions to support and protect the rest of the Indian lost who struggle to survive on as less as Rs. 150 a day.
India desperate needs universality in Public Distribution System, community kitchens, income support, and safe transportation for stranded workers.
According to gathered information, more than 50 people have died due to starvation, exhaustion, police brutality, delayed medical treatment, lack of livelihood. India has a major population of people who survive on daily wages only. For them, lockdown means literally death by starvation.
India needs a robust plan for its lower and middle class that are not receiving aid the way it is being seen.
India’s National Food Security Act requires 5 kg of subsidized food grain be given every month to poor families, who make up 75 percent of the rural population, and 50 percent of the urban population.
Apparently, despite promises to give this and more, most of the Indian population is starving and not getting the food they should be getting. The reason given is that they don’t have the right paperwork to receive the ration. State governments are to be blamed for this callousness but the fact of the matter is that most states are now cash strapped due to delay in tax collections and states are looking for crowd funding.