The Indian government has urged all the states and union territories to ensure that migrant workers “do not resort to walking on road and on railway track.” Laborers presently stranded amid a country lockdown due to coronavirus, need counselling and more “Shramik” trains, the government said in a letter to states.
The move comes a few days after 16 migrants were run over by a cargo train after they fell asleep on the railway track in Aurangabad while they were returning to home. Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla in a letter to the states and union territories expressed concern about the incident.
Hundreds of thousands migrants are stranded without jobs in several parts of the country due to the nation wide lockdown in the wake of lockdown. The government, earlier this month, suggested rolling out “Shramik trains” to help them return to their hometowns.
“In the meeting, the situation of migrant workers walking on roads and railway tracks was noted with great concern,” the letter reads.
“Since their movement by buses and ”Shramik” special trains has already been allowed to enable their travel to native places, all State/UT governments should ensure that migrant workers do not resort to walking on road and on railway tracks,” the Union Home Ministry wrote to the states today.
“In case they are found in such condition, they should be appropriately counselled, taken to nearby shelters and provided with food, water etc. till such time they are facilitated to board the Shramik Special trains or buses to their native places,” the letter further read.
“I urge upon you all to allow receiving of all Shramik special trains without any hindrance and facilitate faster movement of stranded migrant workers to their native places,” Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla appealed to the states.