New Delhi, April 8 (IANSlife) The countrywide lockdown in India due to the COVID-19 pandemic is bringing in great financial uncertainty for everyone, and particularly for the poorest of poor, the most vulnerable, the most marginalised.
One sector also greatly impacted by this is the events sector.
Since live performances depend on people gathering, the lockdown has adversely impacted the community of artistes, performers, teachers of the arts, instrument-makers and other arts-related professionals.
There have been large-scale cancellations of performances; along with this pending payments for previously completed engagements have also been delayed.
Workshops and teaching sessions have been cancelled and teaching institutes have been closed.
In these trying circumstances, lakhs of freelance artistes, who earned their livelihood through performances and regular engagements, face the uncertainty of when and how they will be able to earn again. With meagre resources and savings to support themselves and their dependents, the coming months and a potential recession present a very bleak future for them.
In order to counter this colossal loss, a group of independent artistes and individual cultural practitioners – which include Shubha Mudgal, Aneesh Pradhan, Sameera Iyengar, Arundhati Ghosh, Rahul Vohra, and Mona Irani -have initiated ADAA (Assistance for Disaster Affected Artistes), a crowd-funded campaign that will help provide prompt financial support for more than 100 artistes across 10 states in India.
These individuals working in the field of performing arts will be provided a monthly assistance of Rs 5000 for 6 months beginning from May 1, 2020. This amount is to cover costs of basic rations, provisions and medicines for their families. Each artiste will therefore receive a total of Rs 30,000 spread over 6 months, the organisers said.
Over a 100 beneficiaries will be selected by 10 arts organisations working at grassroots level in 10 states of the country. The organisations include Yalgaar Sanskrutik Manch (Maharashtra), Samudaya (Karnataka), Jana Sanskriti (West Bengal), Imphal Talkies (Manipur), Assam Cultural Academy (Assam), Chennai Kalai Kuzhu (Tamil Nadu), Pehchaan (Rajasthan), Nrityanjali Academy (Telangana).
The criteria for selecting the beneficiaries includes average monthly income, age, gender, medical condition and number of dependents, the organisers said.
The campaign can be supported at www.ourdemocracy.in.