With Or Without Papers, Indian Beauty Workers Find Work, Freedom In Paris

Indian beauticians occupy a cultural niche in the beauty salons of Paris. This provides vulnerable migrant women an entry into a labour market that is otherwise inhospitable to them


In TN’s Garment Factories, Heat Stress Is Leaving Women Workers Sick, Fatigued

The delivery deadlines of fashion brands and suppliers make no allowance for women who are forced to work in peak summer with poor access to water, sanitation and healthcare


‘A Trip To The Doctor Means Loss Of Wages, I Can’t Afford That’

A single mother of two, this e-rickshaw driver in Tinsukia says life is a daily struggle to balance earnings and expense


No Income, Unpayable Debts: The Truth Behind PM Modi’s ‘Lakhpati Didis’

The catchy title apart, the Lakhpati Didi initiative has not really been able to increase income generation among beneficiaries


Why Not Enough Women Are Benefitting From Odisha’s Rural Employment Boost

Odisha’s scheme to increase workdays under MGNREGA has run into systemic challenges, resulting in poor uptake, especially of women workers


Why Haryana’s Young Women Hope Against Hope For A Government Job

The only way to fob off matrimony and find independence is to ensure that you land a government job, say young women at a Rohtak campus


Govt Teaching Jobs: Contractualisation Is Stifling Women’s Aspirations

Job insecurity, random transfers, non-payment of wages, and lack of benefits are hurting contractual teachers, of whom 55% are women


Women’s Collectives Are Pitching Their Own Manifestos To Parties, Candidates

From women belonging to nomadic tribes to cane-cutters, small social and workers’ groups are presenting their charter of demands to politicians and parties contesting the ongoing elections


In Poll Season, Why Women’s Care Labour Needs To Be Debated

When politicians promise to pay for care work they are putting a value on unpaid labour but they also end up reinforcing social norms about ‘women’s work’


Diversion Of Forests Hits Adivasi Women The Hardest. Here Is Why

In 15 of the 86 constituencies where the general elections will be held tomorrow, more than 30% of voters are impacted by the Forest Rights Act. We look at how the loss of forests impacts the lives and livelihoods of Adivasi women


How Jal Jeevan Mission Left Women In Maharashtra’s Hill Districts High And Dry

The taps and pipelines meant to carry water to the homes of hill-dwelling communities of the state have either not been installed or have no water supply. Women trudge miles and undertake risks to collect water


“My Income Hasn’t Changed In Ten Years, And We Have No Savings”

Whether it is putting off an urgent surgery or making do with 250 gm of fish for her family of four once a month, Lakhya Hira Phukon, like most other poorly-paid ASHA workers, has to balance her domestic budget with extreme care


How Caste Smells: Notes From A South Asian Beauty Salon In London

In a London beauty salon run by women from the subcontinent, links between caste, food and odour echo the arguments in the debate in India over a ‘pure vegetarian’ delivery fleet


Rural Jobs Scheme Has Yet To Benefit The Most Marginalised Women Of Maharashtra

Our investigation across eight villages showed just one project available under MGNREGS, forcing women to migrate as far as Odisha in search of work


In Govt’s Maternal Health Scheme, Big Gap Between Intent And Reality

Initiatives to make the Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana more effective has not quite worked out the way it should, we find


How Evictions And Resettlement Upend Women’s Working Lives

In Delhi, evictions get you resettlement housing but in areas with little access to job, services or essential facilities. And it is the women who struggle the most with travel and livelihood options


Bribes, Bullying, Sexual Harassment: Why Workers In A Delhi Hospital Want An End To Outsourced Hiring

Striking sanitation workers in Delhi’s Burari Hospital have accused private hiring companies of corrupt practices and sexual harassment


Assam’s Family Size Norm For New Initiative Could Hit Its Marginalised Women Most

Linking economic welfare schemes for women to their family size will further limit women’s participation in work and increase their vulnerabilities, argue experts


How ASHA Workers’ Overwhelming Workload Impacts India’s Healthcare System

The relentless cycle of field and paperwork is affecting their mental health, leaving them prone to errors


Why Maharashtra’s Anganwadi Workers Stir Is Spiralling Into A Livelihood Crisis

Faced with termination and loss of salary, striking Anganwadi workers in the state are living in fear and anxiety


Their Roles Ambiguous, ASHA Workers Fight For The Right To Contest Elections

There is state pressure to dissuade frontline health workers from fighting for political office even though they are still hired as ‘honorary volunteers’


Who Is Responsible For Safety Of Domestic Workers At Workplaces?

India has approximately 5.2 million domestic workers according to government data. However, the National Domestic Workers’ Movement (NDWM) estimates the total number in India from anywhere […]


Why The Digital Dream Soured Quickly For Anganwadi Workers

Anganwadi workers says their role has gone from deliverers of schemes to being data collectors for the government


Kabaddi Means More Than A Game For Women Wage Workers Of Rural Maharashtra

A unique sports event gives women from poor homes the chance to defy gender norms and find sisterhood in play


Why Homi, 15, Has No Option But Work At A Mine In Rajasthan, 7 Days A Week

Rural women have few work options in the state and poverty does not allow them to study either


For These Women Running Public Toilets In Mumbai, The Workday Lasts 15 Exhausting Hours

On World Toilet Day, here are the stories of two women who struggle to keep sanitation complexes in the slums of Mumbai clean and safe


‘Our Movement Will Continue For ASHA Workers In Other States’: Sunita Rani

After a 73-day protest, Haryana’s ASHA workers were able to negotiate for themselves a Rs 2100 hike in their honorarium. This surpasses what is paid by Kerala, the state that pays ASHA workers the highest amount. But the Haryana ASHA workers union is determined to continue the movement for those working in other states too.


For Women Hawkers In Mumbai’s Flower Market, The Day Begins In Jungles

Despite the enervating humidity of the mid-October night in Mumbai, Bhimabai Zunjure, 40, is deftly working a mound of mango leaves into neat bunches. She sits on the bridge leading to the Dadar flower market, and looks up from her work to only sell the leaves which are in high demand for the ongoing Navratri rituals.


73 Days and Counting, ASHA Workers Continue Their Strike For More Pay In Haryana

The frontline health workers have called for a 24-hour strike outside district offices and homes of political leaders


How A Trade Unionist Used Art To Power Her Unique Trade Union Journey

Culture is a powerful medium to collectivise and empower the working class, says the veteran union leader


Does the size of an organisation have any link to the share of women it employs?

Key Highlights Firms with a larger number of total employees had a higher proportion of female workers  For every 1 percent additional workers firms hire, the […]


How A Dalit Women Led Trade Union Made History

In January 2021, when Jayasre Kathiravel, a 20-year old employee of a garment factory in Tamil Nadu’s Dindigul district was sexually assaulted and murdered by the […]


‘I Am Furious With How State, Politicians Neglect The Poor And Marginalised’

In the bastis of east Mumbai, trade union leader Sangeeta Kamble is an ally and friend of the


What Beauty Parlours In Jharkhand Villages Tell Us About Gender, Caste And Hope

Parlours are small pockets of rebellion and assertion where girls and young women find solidarity in small towns and villages


How The Amendments to Karnataka Factories Act Will Impact Women Garment Workers

Karnataka’s Factories Act amendments raise concerns about worker welfare, women’s rights, and need for international standard compliance


Women Waste Pickers Jeopardise Their Lives For As Little As Rs 100 A Day

In July, a woman rag picker died as her foot caught in a waste truck during a desperate scramble to find valuable scrap. Her story reveals the highly hazardous conditions in which waste pickers work for a pittance


Punjab’s Free Bus Scheme Has Changed Women’s Lives But Its Future Is Shaky

The number of women commuters has doubled but with no funds, public bus networks are stretched, leading to overcrowding and disrupted schedules


Sleep And Night Time Economy In A Street Vendor Neighbourhood

What are the peculiarities of sleep and rest in the life of a female street vendor who works in a market that opens before dawn? Can alternate ideas of urban planning help reimagine her life, ease her anxieties? We return to Delhi’s Raghubir Nagar for answers


In Their Fight For Space, Female Vendors Deal With Everyday Violence

Violent evictions from streets, abuse and brutality are routine for street vendors. A law to protect their rights suffers from flawed implementation


Aaram Ki Jagah: Tracing Leisure Spaces For Raghubir Nagar’s Women Vendors

In this, the third in the series ‘Placing Work, Mapping Places’, we explore the many reasons why Raghubir Nagar’s women hawkers associate leisure with the safety of places of worship


Dalit Lacemakers Of Narsapuram: How They Found Dignity And Livelihood In 19th Century

A craft brought by the missionaries changed the lives of Dalit women in multiple ways before it became the domain of a dominant caste


Vending Law Ineffective, Raghubir Nagar’s Pheriwalis Reimagine Safe Work Spaces

In this, the second in the series ‘Placing Work, Mapping Places’, we detail the struggles of Raghubir Nagar’s pheriwalis in dealing with street and State violence. We ask them to reimagine their workspaces as safer, gender-friendly and more productive.


Decoding women’s labour force participation in 2021-22: What the Periodic Labour Force Survey shows

After recording some improvement in recent years, the growth in female labour force participation rate in India now seems to be stagnating. Among the women who work, the share of those who are self-employed has been increasing in recent years, even as their average earnings, already low, have dwindled further.


Why Focus Must Shift From What Restricts Women’s Employment To What Works For Them

As a young PhD student just embarking on research, I was very certain that I wanted to contribute to the field of education economics. After completing […]


Placing Work, Mapping Places — Stories of Raghubir Nagar’s women informal workers

In India’s cheapest second-hand clothes market, women have to reclaim public spaces to assert their right to livelihood constantly


How many women work in India’s factories?

Of the millions of workers who worked in India’s factories in 2019-20, less than a fifth were women. This share has remained largely unchanged for over two decades


As LPG Prices Soar, Women Return To Toxic Traditional Stoves

A 51.7% rise in the price of LPG refills between January 2021 and July 2022 has forced women from low-incomes homes to minimise the use of gas stoves


Illusion Of Freedom Vs Tyranny Of Gig Work: The Dilemma Of Urban Co’s ‘Partners’

There are rising tensions between the aspirations of thousands of workers and the work structure of the gig economy


Why Women Stringers Are Missing From Telugu Media In Small Towns

The job is too ‘dangerous’, ‘dirty’ for women, say male-dominated newsrooms


Why Informal Micro Businesses Run By Women Are Not Benefiting From E-Formalisation

“What is this Udyam Registration Certificate? Why do I need the certificate?” Kalpanaben*, who runs a saree business out of her house in Delhi, is bewildered. […]


A Day In The Life Of Women Garment Workers: Some Lessons For Employers

In 2021, a qualitative study was carried out on women’s career progression, access to healthcare and grievance redressal mechanisms across the textile and apparel industry. It […]


India’s Workplace Harassment Law Has Failed Informal, Marginalised Workers

India’s law on sexual harassment at work has failed to account for the experiences of informal sector working women, most of who are from marginalised communities […]


Inflation-Hit, Women Demand Better Wages, More Workdays Under Rural Jobs Scheme

As August rains swept Delhi, more than 500 workers, mostly women, gathered around the Jantar Mantar monument to protest delayed wages, reduced workdays and digital glitches […]


‘We Rarely Connect The Social Worlds Of Migrant Women Workers’

‘Mobile Girls Koottam: Working Women Speak’, released in 2021, documents the real-life conversations between gender and labour rights scholar Madhumita Dutta,  radio podcaster Samyuktha PC and […]


Why Women Sugarcane Cutters Of Maharashtra Seek Needless Hysterectomies

Sugarcane cutting is relentless, backbreaking work, say the migrant women workers of Kothi village in Kaij taluka of Maharashtra’s Beed district. You have to hack at […]


Why Credit Coops Outdo Banks In Alleviating Financial Distress Of Informal Workers

Inclusive financial networks such as credit cooperatives are more effective than traditional financial institutions in relieving the financial distress of women whose lives and livelihoods are […]


SC Order Grants Dignity To Sex Work But It Is Far From Being Decriminalised

The recent Supreme Court directives on guaranteeing sex workers dignity and constitutional freedoms still leaves some critical problem areas unaddressed and these can only be resolved […]


In Delhi’s Illegal Factories, Hazards, Precarity Are Every Day Challenges For Women Workers

The recent industrial fire at an electronic assembly unit of Cofe Impex Pvt Ltd in west Delhi’s Mundka village has exposed the social and economic precarity […]


How Indian Laws Patronise Working Women, Limit Job Opportunities

Leela had been a binding assistant at the Kerala Books and Publications Society, a state-owned textbook publishing house, for 19 years when she was overlooked for […]


A Dalit Women’s Union Wrests a First-Ever Private Pact Ensuring Gender Safety At Work

After a year-long campaign by a Dalit women’s union in Tamil Nadu, the multinational fast-fashion brand H&M and its Tamil Nadu-based supplier, Eastman Exports Global Clothing […]


How Maternity Leave Policies Discriminate Against Adoptive Mothers And Children

It took nearly a year for Virginia* and her husband to bring home the four siblings they had asked to adopt. The children were aged between […]


Delhi Anganwadi Workers To Move Court Against Termination Orders

Delhi’s anganwadi workers (AWW) and helpers (AWH), who ended their 38-day strike on March 9, will move court against the state government order terminating the services […]


‘Growing Workload, Still Treated As Volunteers:’ Why Delhi’s Anganwadi Workers Are Protesting

A sea of red flags rises up along Flagstaff Road in north Delhi’s Civil Lines area, just a few metres from the home of chief minister […]


In Tribal UP, School-Girls As Well As Graduates Are Driven To Construction Work

It is a wintery February morning and a dense fog has descended over Palia, a town 100 km from Lakhimpur town in northern Uttar Pradesh’s Lakhimpur […]


Chhattisgarh Government Is Taking Back Covid Incentives Paid To Mitanins

Usha Sahu, 45, a Mitanin trainer from Bemetara district in central Chhattisgarh was in for a  shock when she checked her bank account in October. The […]


How Organic Promotion Policies End Up Excluding Women Farmers In Gujarat

On May 14, 2021, while encouraging farmers to take up organic farming as he released the 8th instalment of the Pradhan Mantri- Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN), […]


Women Yet To Cross Gender Barriers In India’s Agricultural Markets

Lassu Ben, 38, is an outspoken and resolute woman but even she sometimes hesitates to trade with the men at the local farm market. ‘Bahas mat […]


Underpaid ASHA Workers Tackle Covid and Vaccine Hesitancy In Kashmir

Khalida Akhter (36), an ASHA worker from Sheeri village in Baramulla district in North Kashmir, died of Covid-19  in May this year.  An Accredited Social Health Activist […]


How Garment Factories Forced Illegal Resignations Of Women Workers In Karnataka

As Karnataka begins to ease state-wide restrictions imposed since May 10, 2021 to control the spread of COVID-19 virus, industries have been allowed to function with […]


In Poll-Bound Tamil Nadu, Labour Rights Of Women Workers Flouted

S. Rathinam (39) had escaped death by a whisker that afternoon.  On February 13, 2021, she, along with hundreds of others, had to run for their […]


How Women Garment Workers Took On A Global Clothing Giant And Won Their Rights

On 24 October, 2020, 1300 women garment workers of  Euro Clothing Company– 2 (ECC-2) of a unit of Gokaldas Exports in Srirangapatna, in Mandya district of […]


Poor Wages, No Social Security Hurt Women Beedi Workers

“I have been rolling beedis since I was fifteen. Our whole community is dependent on the profession. Our employers underpay us, our pension never arrives without […]


How Women Farmers in Punjab Mobilised Against The Farm Laws

“These capitalists will ruin us,” thundered Charanjeet Kaur, a thirty nine year old farmer with a medium landholding of 12 acres (4 hectares) from Wara Bhaika […]


Cost Of Sugar: Women Cane Cutters In Maharashtra

Neeta (name changed), a cane cutter in one of the many sugarcane farms in Beed district of central Maharashtra, was only in her early 30s when […]


How Farm Acts Affect Women In Agriculture

On 27 September 2020,  three Farm Bills became law after receiving presidential assent. The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill […]


ASHA Workers Criminalised For Fighting For Their Rights

India’s frontline women health workers, or ASHAs, play a critical role in fighting the Covid-19 pandemic. But when they demanded better pay, protective gear and fixed […]


Garment Workers Take On Global Clothing Giant

For over a month now, over 600 women garment workers have been sitting in protest against the illegal layoffs in the factory premises of the  ECC […]


A double blow for Adivasi Women Collectives

” We are unable to sell Mahul flowers in the market due to the lockdown. Lockdown has taken our  livelihood away”, said Baijanti Kalo of Bamandagarh […]


ASHAs Within the ‘Kerala Model’ Lead Covid-19 Response, Get Little in Return

Our 16-state survey found that in Kerala, ASHAs, women health workers at the frontlines of India’s resistance to Covid-19, feel empowered and respected. Yet, their demands […]


Promised, Mostly Never Paid: Rs 1,000 Covid Wage To Million Health Workers

Minara Begum, 33, has reached breaking point. “If the government of Assam does not release my salary today, my kids will starve,” said the mother of […]


10 लाख स्वास्थ्य कर्मियों को 1000 रुपये की ‘कोविड सैलरी’: वादे ज्यादातर पूरे नहीं हुए

असम की रहने वालीं 33 साल की मीनारा बेगम चार बच्चों की मां हैं. उनका सबसे छोटा बेटा दो साल का है. वह रोते हुए कहती […]


Anger, Distress Among India’s Frontline Workers In Fight Against Covid-19

Without them, It would be impossible to track, test and monitor Covid-19 patients across India’s villages and cities. But over a million women health workers must […]


कोविड-19 के खिलाफ लड़ाई : गुस्सा और तनाव में भारत के फ्रंटलाइन वर्कर्स

रात के 9 बज रहे हैं. दिनभर की भाग-दौड़ के बाद अब लक्ष्मी सिंह खाने बैठी ही थीं कि सरपंच ने उन्हें बुला लिया.कई दिनों से […]