Arun.prabhu wrote:How can anyone not have seen paupers reduced to skin and bones in our cities? How can we employ people to cook and clean our homes and not know how hard their lives are?
I can assure you the people who cook and clean in my house are not at all bothered right now. They are treating it as an extended holiday, know most of us (at least we are) paying them the full salary during the period. Their only gripe is their secondary source of income/side-hustle which was very lucrative (1-2K/day running small food joint etc) is shut down during the period.
You have a valid point about the homeless and that group - that's where NGOs and Govt are doing their bit but yes, they would be affected.
We have three-four hundred million people below the poverty line. They have no safety nets apart from their jobs, families and friends and loan sharks. The lockdown took away the first for those people, including their extended families and friends. They might as well commit suicide as go to a loan shark without a job because they'll be buried in debt feeding their family and themselves until the economy gets back on its feet.
People need to understand that once the flow of money stops, it can't be restarted easily. Demonetization took us how long to recover? And that was with slowdown of the velocity of money. This lockdown is going to bring it to almost a stop. My friend, who is manufacturing masks and PPE informs me all his customers have stopped payments. He still needs to pay upfront for his raw material. He needs to meet his EMI commitments - if not for the next three months, then after - and he needs to pay his staff. I received an email from HDFC - as must many of you from your banks - that the moratorium on EMIs does not come with a freeze on interest accrual. Interest accrues for the there months. You just don't get reported to the credit bureaus as a defaulter.
The GOI understands this, hence the focus on getting loan disbursals to SMEs and also, making sure money is directly reaching the needy. This will also spur the focus towards digitalization. Several of the folks including small scale guys I know refused it so far - they didnt want account tracking, tax hassles. But now, they will understand the need.
Oh, I heard from sources that organizations such as Pfizer are paying their employees 30% of their usual salary. They can subsist on it or quit their jobs. In this market. During a pandemic.
I am not sure all organizations are equally harsh. But personally speaking, I'd rather have a job with a lower pay for a fewer months than no job at all. I am more concerned that many Indian organizations still dont seem to understand WFH is a valid method of working and can be scaled up even beyond such a pandemic. Many cost-centers in India have become very used to billing their customers in their own org abroad heavily using exaggerated costs for real-estate. I suspect that's a big reason why they are so resistant to change.