ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles by Martín RamaSubscribe to Martín Rama

Unpacking India’s COVID-19 Social Assistance Package

To address the social impact of the COVID-19 crisis, the Government of India extended the scope and benefits of several existing social assistance programmes. This paper assesses who benefited, and to what extent, using administrative data from each of the main programmes included in the package. The analysis shows that implementation constraints, partial uptake, and substitution effects reduced the overall transfer of resources to households relative to budget allocations. There were also substantial disparities in the actual amounts transferred across states. Finally, a rural bias prevailed even though urban informal workers were probably the most affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

Employment Outcomes along the Rural-Urban Gradation

In an economy that is transforming rapidly, both economically and spatially, the boundaries between rural and urban areas have become blurred. In practice, the rural-urban divide is more accurately characterised as a rural-urban gradation. Labour market outcomes vary along this gradation. Not integrating the gradation in our data and analysis leads to important loss of granularity and can yield misleading conclusions, a point we illustrate with the decline in female labour force participation.

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