Poll, Auto News, ET Auto
New Delhi, Smart Power India (SPI), a subsidiary of the Rockefeller Foundation, has released the results of its survey titled “SPI’s Survey of Mini-grid Villages May 2021” which shows that overall economic activity in these villages has been less affected in 2021. due to the pandemic which largely affected the health and education sector.
The survey was carried out to assess the impact of COVID-19, with a sample of 200 people in 48 villages in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. It was learned that while overall economic activity in mini-grid villages was less affected in 2021, the impact on education and health infrastructure was much worse compared to 2020. SPI conducts these surveys periodically for stay abreast of the evolving issues facing the rural Indian consumer. with, in light of the pandemic.
According to recent SPI surveys conducted in mini-grid villages, 61% of participants responded that the availability of essential services this year was better than the 2020 lockdown. Family income also showed improvement over the first lockdown, because 29% of respondents expressed that 10 to 25% of their family income this year has been affected due to the foreclosure due to better preparation. About 1.6% of those polled did not experience any impact from the foreclosure on their income.
This improvement in the income of families in rural areas can be attributed to reliable access to electricity which has been consistent for rural communities amid the closures of 2020 and 2021. 67% of survey respondents expressed satisfaction as to the quality and availability of reliable electricity from mini-grids.
Although the Indian economy has reflected signs of recovery from the peak of the first wave in September 2020, this recovery has not been consistent. Income, employment and health remain major concerns for rural communities. A recent CSE report estimates that more than 230 million Indians have fallen below the national minimum wage due to the COVID-19 crisis. The loss of jobs, declining wages and the unavailability of health infrastructure remain a concern, leaving the rural masses unable to adequately feed their families.
Many of those who lost their jobs during the 2020 lockdown had found jobs, but there was a drop in overall income – 90% due to declining income and the rest due to job loss. As the second wave swept through India, the country reported 1,432,292 new cases of COVID-19 and 24,914 deaths (as of June 20, 2021).
India is on the cusp of another deadly wave of pandemic. With new variants of the virus entering our ecosystem, the coming wave is expected to be as deadly as the previous one. Anticipating this situation, SPI strives to understand the realities on the ground and the demands of rural communities by creating a resource bank, adapting from survey data to understand weak points and proposing quick and effective solutions. locally relevant.
Commenting on the third edition of the survey, Jaideep Mukherji, CEO of Smart Power India, said: “Through our consumer survey in 2021, we observed that education and health were severely affected in rural communities in reason for locking. The current survey found nearly 34% of rural students were forced to discontinue online education due to lack of infrastructure. As the virus enters rural areas, it is linked to an economic impact and this distress cannot be immediately captured by aggregate GDP figures; it will only show after a while. The focus is now on reviving the economy and ensuring that rural communities receive the maximum amount of help possible through organizations, governments and individuals. “
“Based on the results of our survey last year, we launched the voucher program while this year, understanding the health emergency that rural communities are going through, we have partnered with three NGOs working on the land to provide medical assistance to the rural masses. “