The permanence of temporary workers

Publication Type:

Opinion

Authors:

Narendar Pani

Source:

The Hindu Business Line (2016)

Other Number:

http://eprints.nias.res.in/1104/

URL:

http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/todays-paper/tp-opinion/the-permanence-of-temporary-workers/article8757406.ece

Abstract:

<p class="rtejustify">The unique needs of those who work in cities even as they maintain homes in the village must be addressed by policymakers Cities bring with them a sense of permanence. Many of them have been around for hundreds of years. Some of their more memorable institutions too tend to have long histories. It is no surprise, then, that most of urban policy takes aspects of a city to be given. While migration into the city necessarily brings new elements into that urban space, it is typically assumed to be a unidirectional phenomenon with the migrants being expected, by and large, to become permanent residents of that city. Major Indian cities, though, don’t always fit neatly into this pattern. They often provide a critical place for workers who are not permanent residents of that city. This phenomenon is prompted primarily by the nature of Indian urbanisation. As usually happens with economic development, the share of agriculture in GDP income has been declining rapidly, with it hovering around the 15 per cent mark today. Economists would expect this decline to prompt largescale migration of labour into the city in search of work. This expectation underlies many of the projections of rapid urbanisation in India.</p>