I live in Mumbai, the ‘City of Dreams’, and the heart of the film and television industry. Like me, many people in Mumbai are migrants, who live here only because it is their place of work.
The lockdown has brought with it a lot of uncertainties. I work as a freelancer in the film industry, and with all the projects either on hold for the time being without pay, or being shelved. I, along with several others like me, am struggling to make basic payments of rent and electricity.
A lot of people have managed to go back to their hometown, and are taking care of expenses of that house plus the rent and expenses of their Mumbai flats. Some of us have savings to pay for this month’s rent, but what after that?
There is an extremely urgent need for the Chief Minister of Maharashtra to hear us, take our plea into consideration, and make a public announcement allowing deferred payment of rent. I request you all to sign my petition.
With the Finance Minister rolling out the economic packages for all of the poor and the farmers, there is also a need for the freelancers to be taken care of, as we are solely dependent on payments based on project per project. A lot of people have the option to work from home, and continue to get paid for their jobs, but so many of us have no option, but to wait for work to resume to earn our next pay.
The Delhi government has taken a bold and positive step and requested all landlords not to collect the rent if tenants are unable to pay the rent, and take it later in instalments. Mr. Kejriwal also asked landlords not to harass tenants, and promised that the Delhi Govt. will pay the rent later if tenants are unable to.
Mumbai is already seeing multiple cases of harassment by landlords being reported. In these uncertain times, we need some respite and the assurance that we will still have a roof over our heads and that our landlords will not cancel our agreement just because we have not been able to pay rent.
Please sign my petition asking the CM of Maharashtra to make a public announcement allowing deferred payment of rent.