Working Papers

Frontline Workers and the Covid-19 Pandemic

Centre For Policy Research

July 20, 2022

The Covid-19 pandemic proved to be a global disaster that took countless lives, many of whom were frontline functionaries deployed to contain this crisis. As a result, the Indian state, unlike before, had to acknowledge the risk that accompanied their workers in this crisis. They promised them vaccination, health & life insurance, amongst other material benefits to protect, insure and motivate such cadres. The paper attempts to study these promises, in particular its vaccination and insurance policies, to better understand what it meant to be a frontline worker in this crisis. Did the Indian administration account for all at-risk workers and their context, or did they simply exclude many of them in their policies ? The essay, at its core, will answer this question as it examines the Indian state’s capacity to celebrate its frontline workers.