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

COVID-19Subscribe to COVID-19

State–Society Synergy at COVID-19’s Invisible Front Lines

The voices of rural residents and front-line officials in India’s villages and small towns are often absent in accounts of the pandemic, which have focused on the crises unfolding in major cities. Yet these voices offer crucial insight into the invisible front lines of COVID-19, with critical lessons for governance and emergency response. For the past year, through two waves of COVID-19, we have gathered hundreds of grassroots accounts from citizen journalists and government workers embedded in communities across rural India. The stories that emerge reveal divergent experiences and gaps in trust and communication between local residents and officials. However, they also reveal instances where local actors bridge these gaps, suggesting the potential for a powerful “synergy—marked by cooperation and coordination—between locally embedded state and societal actors.” This synergy, we argue, is crucial for a robust pandemic response that reflects and meets local needs.

Distance Is Measured in Time

Diasporic distance is measured in time—the number of hours spent devouring news from India, the months spent imagining a near future of reunions.

Storytelling from the Front Lines

The present pandemic has posed a new challenge to photojournalists who have documented the crisis in the face of severe social distancing norms and threat of infection.

Post-COVID-19 Paths to Fiscal Consolidation

In order to analyse how the excess of growth over the real interest rate can best contribute to Indian post-COVID-19 debt adjustment paths, the article draws on historical experience, past adjustment episodes and special features of emerging markets. It notes that a countercyclical primary deficit will contribute, and together with a substantial g–r gap, lower debt most efficiently, creating space for adequate fiscal response to future shocks.

COVID-19, Health Insurance and Access to Healthcare

Addressing the COVID-19 pandemic with a robust healthcare system, and effective government intervention with appropriate regulation on private sector, is a more appropriate option than resorting to insurance to cover COVID-19 related care, or healthcare in general.

Adherence to Pandemic Ethics during India’s Covid-19 Lockdown

Adherence to pandemic ethics complements, regulates and refines public health emergency law enforcements. It is integral that ethics should not only be limited to the content of the policies but also to the processes. The two Indian laws used to fight the Covid-19 pandemic are either antiquated or inappropriately applied. In this context, the article analyses the adherence of countrywide lockdown to the existing principles of ethics.

India and the RCEP

COVID-19 has widely affected global supply and value chains, and specific sectors around the world. In this scenario, the options for India to optimise its regional and global value chain linkages with the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership are examined, which in turn could aid in its post-pandemic recovery.

COVID-19 Vaccine Accessibility

The patent waiver procedure at the World Trade Organization needs to be fast-tracked. The global community must not be constrained by the interests of private industry and saving lives is what matters.

Our Domestic Chores

Poorly paid and with no employment benefits, female domestic workers are becoming the sole breadwinners of their families.

Impact of COVID-19 on MSMEs

Micro, small, and medium enterprises contribute a third of India’s gross domestic product and provide employment to over 110 million workers. Using a mixed methods design to ascertain the level of sectoral distress at the peak of the nationwide lockdown in May 2020, we found production falling from an average of 75% of capacity to just 13%. On an average, firms retained only 44% of their workforce, and 69% of firms reported inability to survive longer than three months. Distress measures were more severe for smaller firms by employment size.

Pages

Back to Top