Knowledge Resource

Migrant Workers in the Coal Mines of India: Precarity, Resilience and the Pandemic

Suravee Nayak
This paper explores the current precarious employment situations and resiliency of migrant workers in India who have experienced life under several coal mining regimes. The author makes the case that the labouring lives of migrant workers from marginalised communities have been hidden in a "shadow economy" of coal extraction through subcontracting and labour recruitment by local contractors working with state-owned coal companies, drawing on ethnographic fieldwork conducted in the Talcher coalfields of Odisha.