Labour Migrants as an (Un)Controllable Virus in India and Singapore

Baas, Michiel
The Asia-Pacific Journal

The COVID-19 crisis has severely impacted migrant workers in Asia. This article compares the cases of India and Singapore to understand how these countries have dealt with their migrant populations in response to the crisis, as well as in relation to how they envision their place in society and regulates their rights. This is revealing for the deeply ingrained sense of socioeconomic inequality that informs how these countries narrate their own relatively recent economic success stories on the global stage. The idea of a ‘new India’ and ‘global city Singapore’ are both based on entrenched notions of inclusion and exclusion.