MHA seeks coordination between Railways, States & UTs to help migrant workers reach homes

Union Home Ministry has asked states to proactively coordinate with the Railway Ministry to help ferry the stranded migrant workers to their native places. In a letter written to Chief Secretaries of all States and Union Territories, Home Secretary  Ajay Bhalla has suggested measures to mitigate the distress of migrant workers across the country. Bhalla has urged NGOs to come forward to help the workers at the designated resting places. Measures should be taken to encourage more migrant workers to stay at these places. Clarity should be made regarding the departure of trains and buses to avoid any kind of unrest amongst the workers, he said adding the need for extra care for meeting the specific requirements of women, children and elderly amongst the migrant workers. States should ensure arrangements for resting places with facilities of sanitation, food and health for all such workers who are on the move.  District Authorities should guide such workers to the designated rest places, nearby bus terminals or railway stations by arranging transportation. States should prepare a list of the migrant workers with addresses and contact numbers, which can be used for contacting them, Ajay Bhalla said. Meanwhile, AICC President Sonia Gandhi has convened a meet of opposition parties in Delhi on Friday to work out a common strategy to help out the migrant workers. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is expected to attend it. Indian Railways says it has operated 1,565 ‘Shramik Special’ trains since May 1 and ferried over 20 lakh migrants back home. Prepared to run more special trains if requested by states, it added. (courtesy to HT for picture)

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