Making Workers Footloose

Arup Kumar Sen

As India is struggling with the spread of the coronavirus, the prominent BJP-ruled states like Uttar Pradesh (UP), Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat have decided to make significant changes in the application of labour laws. Reportedly, “UP, the most populous state, has made the boldest changes as it summarily suspended the application of almost all labour laws in the state for the next three years”, including the Minimum Wages Act. (The Indian Express, May 12, 2020)

What is the expected outcome of the above move? To put it in the apt words of a media report: “…this move will in one go turn the existing formal workers into informal workers as they would not get any social security”.(ibid.)

We have already witnessed the plight of migrant workers and daily-wage earners in the wake of coronavirus-induced national lockdown.

The present pro-Capital neoliberal move by the prominent BJP-ruled states will make the Indian workers as a class more footloose.

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May 16, 2020

Arup Sen

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