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            The Government of India celebrated the 1st year of demonetization. Opposition of the Government observed “Kala Dibas”.  Demonetization was a foul programme. However, initially,  people in Bottom of Pyramid were very happy, and they thought that it was good step. They believed that rich people would become poor and they would get monetary rewards from the Government in their ‘Jana Dhana Accounts’. But gradually they have understood how they were hypnotized with this illusion. The effects of demonetization were adverse so far as their survival was concerned. Now they claimed and opined that Government had pushed them into a bad situation and they are in trouble to manage their minimal self.

A result of the small survey on effects of demonetization has been discussed explaining the agony of demonetization among poor working class. In Kolkata, there are many giant urban housing colonies consisting many residual units (flats) and a huge number of middle and higher classes people is the owner of these units. A number of people(just literate or primary standard of education, backward, unskilled or semiskilled)  works as maintenance workers (sweepers, cleaners, electrician and plumbers, etc.) of these units. They are contractual labour. Beside their monthly wages, they generally perform extra duty when the owners of these units assign internal work in their residual area for extra payment. It is usually at large before the festivals (Durga Puja). This extra income is potentially helpful for their family.  But after demonetization, they did not get such assignment and their extra earning was obviously cut off. Even, when they got extra-assignment their payment was lower than earlier times. Moreover, before the festival they enjoy some monetary rewards from the owners of these units which were almost nothing in this year.  The second scenario is that these units usually tender for internal maintenance (interior work) frequently to the local contractors. This year there was too limited such tender. Consequently, working people was jobless and their families were in crisis.

Now this poor labour class people use to blame government for horrifying decision of demonetization. They are gradually entering into the situation of job losers and necessarily they are afraid of hunger and others. They use to utter that the rich people are very much conscious and they are strict to incur unnecessary expenses for their lives style management.

Thus,  it reveals that life style and life choices of middle classes and higher classes has been created jobs of informal sector and they use to maintain it through their extra-earning. The fate of informal sectors depends on them. It is a cause of uncertain future of labour of informal sectors. Demonetization alerts them (middle and higher classes) to be restricted in their lives style. It might be said that flow of money determines the future of informal sectors. Governments fail to create new job markets. But it destroys the labour markets for poor. Gradually these informal poor labours would lose their work, and they would surely choose another path of earning. Therefore, social conflict, anti-social work, and crime would increase. Is government prepared to handle this situation? Is government ensuring more progress and development or it leads to put the poor people in a stage of poverty and backwardness? Only the development of corporate sectors supporting the government would not be the path of country’s progress development. Government fails to keep its promise for development of poor.

Harasankar Adhikari  Kolkata Based Impendent Social Worker

One Comment

  1. K SHESHU BABU says:

    One of the affects of demonetisation is that it has changed the life style of poor and downtrodden for the worse. Prior to this exercise, they lived without much external disturbance. But note ban made them suffer due to lack of money on hand and caused immense troubles in daily routine