They aim to provide food, grains, and financial help
Following a Supreme Court order, Maharashtra has become the first state to provide financial aid to sex workers.
On November 26, 2020, the Maharashtra Government decided to provide financial aid of Rs. 5,000 per month (£50) to all the sex workers.
Those who have school-going children will get extra financial assistance of Rs. 2,500 (£25) per child per month.
Yashomati Thakur, Women and Child Development Minister of Maharashtra declared:
“Sex workers have been helped by the state government during the pandemic.
“We have just issued a GR under which the right to livelihood has been made available to sex workers in the state.
“Maharashtra is the first state to come up with such a provision. We have allocated Rs. 51.18 crore (£5 million) towards the same.”
Thakur also stated that there are almost 31,000 beneficiaries identified by the Maharashtra government.
The Maharashtra Government identified sex workers in their state through the National Aids Control Organisation.
The beneficiaries of this financial aid will not have to provide any identity card to avail the assistance.
Sex workers from across the country are encountering an unprecedented crisis due to the pandemic.
Recently, the apex court had issued an order directing states to further inform their District Collectors to formulate a committee.
On September 29, 2020, India’s Supreme Court directed all states to dry ration to sex workers without asking for proof of identity.
They aim to provide food, grains, and financial help to sex workers whose income had significantly reduced during this pandemic.
The court ordered Indian states to not only provide ration to those that approached them but to reach out to more individuals in the industry.
The Maharashtra government will so forth be providing Rs. 5,000 a month, as well as 2kg rice, and 3kg wheat to all beneficiaries.
As per government resolution, this aid will be provided to 5,600 female beneficiaries from October 2020 to December 2020.
Maharashtra has become the first state to bring the Supreme Court’s resolution to effect.
Maharashtra’s capital Mumbai has a vast community of sex workers and they have been some of the worst-hit by this pandemic.
Physical distancing norms have forced their businesses to shut indefinitely.
Hence, in September 2020, Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee, a collective of sex workers, approached the supreme court for aid.
They impeached the court to provide help to their committee as they were facing a shortage of food and shelter.