AFTER THE STORM COME THE VULTURES: COVID 19 IMPACT ON CRIME AND UNEMPLOYMENT BY PRANJALI PANDYA

INTRODUCTION

Big crises lead to Big changes”, similarly, the COVID – 19 pandemic has forced each and every one of us to change our routine, lifestyle and our day to day habits. Not only, but also has this but the pandemic has already started affecting the economy throughout the world. The researcher in this article has focused on how the Post – pandemic scenario would be by primarily focusing on the impact on Crime and Unemployment in India.

IMPACT OF COVID – 19 ON UNEMPLOYMENT

After the imposition of the nationwide lockdown, India had witnessed thousands of frightened labourers on roads who wanted to go home fearing no future livelihood. First of all, it would be difficult to bring these migrant workers back from the rural areas to the big cities, or where they have been working post the lockdown. There has also been a dramatic increase in unemployment and reduction in income, particularly for those working for low wage and unorganised sector; this meant that a significant number of people who were already vulnerable find themselves in even more precarious circumstances. Starting from the garment industry, agriculture, and farming, to manufacturing and domestic work, millions of people who were living in subsistence conditions have lost their wages and jobs.

According to the report, as on May 2020 which was published by Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy Private Limited (CMIE) had stated that around 120 million individuals are left jobless with the result of COVID – 19 pandemic, this included the migrant workers, entrepreneurs, and the salaried class. News is also prevailing that big companies may lay off a large number of employees worldwide.

The following are the affected sector and the major reason as to why the pandemic will increase the number of unemployed people throughout the country:-

  • Social – distancing is the new norm which will be followed everywhere; because of this reason, people tend to lose their job in various sectors. This would per se include all the sectors which involve a large number of people working in a closed area. Some of the enterprises like that have directed its employees to work from home for a longer-term. Some of the big companies have also removed many of its employees since they were unable to pay remuneration during the period of lockdown.
  • The Automotive Industry in India has also been hit by a triple whammy: after the imposition of the nationwide lockdown, many of the factories have closed, supply chains have been disrupted and there is a collapse in demand. Just – in – time the manufacturing process has propagated the impact across the globe. Small enterprise and Medium enterprise are amongst the hardest hit and millions of jobs are at risk. The automakers are now shifting their job by manufacturing ventilators.
  • Textile, Clothing, Leather and Footwear Industry (or industry which is indulged into manufacturing, production and selling of non – essential items) are unravelling, as workers are told to stay back home, some of the contract workers are also being terminated, long closure of factories and global supply chain grind to a halt. The cancellation of orders has hit thousands of enterprises and millions of workers particularly.
  • One of the hardest hit by this pandemic is the Tourism sector. Even post the pandemic; people will avoid travelling and visiting places that would gather a huge public in a particular area. Travelling increases the risk of getting infected, due to which people would hesitate to do long journeys and stay in hotels and eat in restaurants. This, in turn, would make the individual employed in restaurants, hotels, and the tourism sector lose their job. This in turn will also affect the Logistic and Road Transport, the transport sector is essential for the social and economic development of the country. The sector also guarantees mobility across the jurisdiction and countries. But, in order to curb the spread to coronavirus many countries around the world, including India have placed restrictions on domestic transit and/ or closed border crossings for road freight transport services. This will also continue for a longer period of time even if everything comes to place. People will hesitate to book a cab or an auto rickshaw and using public transport, which in turn will lead to unemployment for the people working under the transportation sector.
  • Academic Sector – Most of the classes for students were being conducted online and through automated teaching. Since there has been a huge advancement in technology and everyone around is being very techno-centric, the teaching and non – teaching staff would be worst affected. Since everything now is becoming automated the students are also relying on the virtual teaching method by the automated technology, hence the risk of them also being unemployed is high.
  • Amongst all, the hardest hits during the pandemic and even after the pandemic is the Migrant labourers, who migrate from one place to another to earn their living. Most of the contract labourers have been removed from their job by the employer, and many of them have already migrated to their home states. Bringing them back for work is very difficult even post pandemic as well. It is now the responsibility and duty of the receiving state to take some measure by bringing up any kind of scheme which would provide these migrant workers for job security.
  • The unemployment has affected the women also, given the fact that women typically earn less when compared to men, there is a growing risk that women`s jobs in heterosexual households will be sacrificed, leading to a drop in women`s workforce participation, this will ,in turn, increase the gender pay gap. Women in the district of Beed, Maharashtra during the pandemic have gone to an extent of getting their uterus removed so that they don`t lose their job, by being pregnant.

IMPACT OF COVID – 19 ON CRIME

The Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime Report had stated that the pandemic has caused a decrease in criminal activities and incidents. But the researcher here disagrees with the very fact that COVID – 19 has reduced the crime.Below are reasons for the same:

  • There has been an increase in the number of Domestic Violence in the households Fuelled by the mandatory stay at home rules, social distancing, economic uncertainties have caused an increase in the violence against women globally. Within a few days of lockdown itself National Commission of Women (NCW) noted a rise in the number of Domestic Violence complaints which were received by emails. In fact, National Legal Service Authority (NALSA) had also stated that the imposition of lockdown had led to an increase in the number of Domestic Violence cases.

The issue here is whether there is any kind of relation between unemployment and increased domestic violence cases. To answer this question the researcher had relied on a study by Daniel Schneider at UC Berkeley, which shows that unemployment among men led to increased abusive behaviour during the Great Recession of the 2000.. The study also stated that as men felt increasingly anxious and out of control over their jobs and financial securities, they became more likely to increase control over their romantic partners, and sometimes to the point of abuse also.  Hence,it is pertinent to note that unemployment has a major contribution in the cause of domestic violence. This is a serious problem which is needed to be addressed and the women in many of the states are victim to the abuse and it is the responsibility of the state to protect the women.

  • This pandemic has tremendously increased the use of technology in every field of area. Starting from virtual webinars, automated study to work from home. Due to this reason there is a higher risk of cyber crime and attack, and hence. the securities of companies are at stake. As all the data such as financial information, trade secrets, personal information of the customers and other such confidential data are now available to the employees from their homes with just a click of a button. Post the pandemic also most of the work by people will be done sitting at home, hence they are more vulnerable to cyber attacks. It is vital for employees to take utmost care and cautions of the company’s data and secure it from hackers.

During the COVID – 19 outbreak most of the people have spent their time on social networking sites, in addition to watching movies and subscribing to web channels and  indulging in online games by installing applications all these activities are supported by the internet. By signing any application they are supposed to provide personal information, which would include financial data in case of purchasing any app. Additionally, with the principal of stay at home, many people have done online transactions to pay various bills. All these activities have open doors for cyber attacks.

CONCLUSION

COVID – 19 outbreak is the time when the government must take up initiative by providing migrant workers with employment opportunities and welfare schemes, rather than coming up with Ordinance which restricts the right of the labourers. Just like how after every storm comes the vultures who slowly ruins the area, similarly, after the this pandemic the increase in unemployment and crime would not only affect the GDP of the country, but also would led to recession and poor mental health of the individual`s who are left unemployed and those who are the victims of crime.

 

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