Thousands of Techies in Locked-Down India Are Braving Coronavirus Daily To Keep the World Running

The world’s abrupt slowing down in the past few weeks may have introduced millions of Covid-19-wary professionals to the whole new paradigm of work-from-home. Yet, a third of India’s four million IT employees are still trudging regularly to the office even if mostly to make life easier for clients abroad. From a report: Every working day, these thousands risk contracting coronavirus, jeopardising even their families’ health, by going to work amid India’s ongoing 21-day lockdown. Only because their jobs, in cities like Bengaluru, Pune, and Hyderabad, form the backroom spine of some of the world’s corporate behemoths. Indian IT majors like Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Infosys, and Wipro service giants like General Electric, Citibank, Morgan Stanley, Fidelity, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, Airbus, Cisco, British Telecom, Vodafone, and Nielsen, among thousands of other companies across the globe.

“We power the financial backbones of several countries, support some of the largest health care and pharmacy companies in the world, run technology for governments and public services organisations,” a TCS spokesperson told Quartz when asked about the lockdown. Besides, many global businesses also have essential functions — accounting, payments, billing, human resources, and payroll — being carried out in their own back offices in India.