The Bihar Post

COVID-19: Lifting of lockdown not improved people’s income, employment scenario, say researchers

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PATNA—Despite lifting of lockdown, incomes are not increasing significantly and consumption levels have been compromised, researchers, scholars and academicians said at a webinar on “COVID-19, livelihood and food security of informal migrants: A way forward”.

The webinar was organized by AN Sinha Institute of Social Studies (ANSISS), Patna in collaboration with University of Aberdeen, UK, GB Pant Social science institute, UP and Institute for Economic Growth, New Delhi on Tuesday.

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“At the aggregate level, there is a deceleration in demand which is not contributing to employment creation,” the speakers said, adding employment guarantee and income support measures are must both for the rural and urban areas.

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To address the nutritional crisis, they added, it is important to increase the coverage of safety net programmes, such as Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-Day Meal (MDM), inclusion of pulses in PDS, nutritional assessment of smaller children, adolescents and pregnant women, starting a state-wide community management for severe acute malnutrition (SAM) children and restoring the micronutrient supplementation programmes.

The speakers also discussed the need to inquire about the experience of migrants in first and second wave of COVID-19 for more appropriate policy action.

Those participated in the webinar included Dr Sandhya Mahapatro, Assistant Professor at ANSISS, Asangba Chuba Ao, Director, ANSISS, Prof Jennie Macdiarmid from University of Aberdden, UK, Prof Arup Mitra, IEG, New Delhi, Rabi Parhi, Nutrition Expert, UNICEF, Bihar and Dr Arvinda Meera Guntupalli.

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