The second wave of COVID-19 has hit India hard, with over 10,000 new cases being reported every day in states like West Bengal. At a time when social distancing has to be maintained and local transport services remain restricted, the trans and gender-diverse communities in the region have lost their main sources of livelihood such as begging and sex work. We can no longer perform at events or social gatherings including weddings. Some of the trans migrant laborers have also been forced to return to Bengal after losing their jobs in cities like Mumbai, due to the lockdown. Consequently, we are struggling to pay for our basic needs – food, rent, electricity, and medical bills.
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Break-up of expenses:
Groceries delivery: 3 months x Rs. 500 x 250 persons: Rs. 3,75,000/-
Overdue House rent: 6 months x Rs. 2000 x 20 households = Rs. 2,40,000/-
Overdue Electricity bill: 6 months x Rs. 500 x 20 households = Rs. 60,000/-
Medicines: 3 months x Rs. 200 x 250 persons = Rs. 1,50,000/-
Total: Rs. 8,25,000.