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‘Reinvisiblisation’ of Indian Migrant Labours during/post COVID-19 Pandemic: A Biopolitical Study


The paper unravels the ‘reinvisiblisation’ of the Indian migrant labours, who underwent mass exodus because of the lockdown imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic that brought to light their ‘invisibility’ to Indian planners and policymakers. The research qualitatively analyses the selected incidents to elucidate upon their precarious experiences unique to the pandemic. It employs the Foucauldian theoretical framework of docile bodies to understand the workings of biopower in disciplining the body of migrant labours to maintain their docility and utility even amidst the pandemic. The study further employs Judith Butler’s concept of precarious lives to delineate how migrant workers and labours were exposed to violence, injury, and death on their way back home. The research lays bare the attempts of the disciplinary regime to render them docile in the guise of assistance and ‘inclusive’ policy changes and concludes by suggesting serious changes in policy measures and alternatives to avoid such crises in the future.


COVID-19, Migration, Indian Labours, Docility, Precarity, India



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