URL:
https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/EDI-06-2021-0146/full/html
Authors:
Diti Goswami
Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, Centre for Sustainable Employment, Azim Premji University
Sandeep Kumar Kujur
Institute of Public Enterprise
Published:
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Mar 2022, 41
JEL Codes:
JEL code(s) not specified.
Versions:
● Employment inequality in India during the pandemic
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Purpose: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-induced response policies initiated by the Indian states disproportionately impact the employment of different groups in terms of gender, caste and religion. This study analyses the impact of the COVID-19-induced labor policies on employment inequality across different groups in India.Design/methodology/approach: The authors identify different exogenous COVID-19-induced labor policies initiated by the Indian states, and synthesize them into direct and indirect labor policies. The authors employ a panel model to examine the impact of COVID-19-induced labor policies on employment inequality. Findings:The authors find that the direct and indirect labor policies induce a decline in the employment rate, and create employment inequality among gendered and religious sub-groups. Females and Muslims have not significantly benefited from the COVID-19-induced labor policies. However, disadvantaged caste groups have benefited from direct and indirect labor policies. Research limitations/implications: The time period during which this research was conducted was quite brief, and the qualitative impact of labor policies on employment inequality has not been accounted for. Practical implications:This study unravels the distributive impact of the COVID-19-induced direct and indirect labor policies on the well-being of vulnerable laborers. Social implications: The study provides novel empirical evidence of the beneficial role of a proactive government. This studys findings suggest the need for specific distributive labor policies to address employment inequality among gender and religious groups in India. Originality/value: The study employs new data sources and synthesizes the COVID-19-induced labor policies into direct and indirect labor policies. In addition, the study contributes to understanding the impact of COVID-19 induced direct and indirect labor policies on employment inequality across gender, caste and religious sub-groups in India.

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