Hyderabad, May 22 (IANS) Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao has directed officials “to ensure that no migrant worker undergoes the unfortunate situation of walking back to his native place”.
He asked Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar to arrange trains for the migrant workers to help them reach their home. He said that if trains are not available buses be arranged for such workers.
KCR, as the chief minister is popularly known, appealed to migrant workers not to resort to walking back, as the state government would take the responsibility of shifting them to their native places.
The chief minister made the appeal late on Thursday amid reports that several migrant workers are still leaving on the arduous journey by foot to their destinations.
The Telangana government has so far transported over one lakh migrant workers to their home states by 74 trains. Officials said that 1,01,146 passengers were transported by Shramik special trains till May 20.
The authorities operated maximum 26 trains to Bihar, 14 trains to Uttar Pradesh and 11 trains to Jharkhand. Trains were also operated to Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Orissa, Chhattisgarh, North East, Uttarakhand, West Bengal and Punjab.
In fact, the first Shramik special train in the country was operated from Telangana on May 1. The train from Lingampalli near Hyderabad carried 1,225 migrants to Hatia in Jharkhand.
The state government has paid Rs 8.5 crores to the railways towards the payment of fare of all the migrant workers.
The chief secretary has directed the officials to make arrangements for further movement of stranded persons by trains.
Meanwhile, the state government informed Telangana High Court that over 3 lakh migrants applied to the police and other authorities to allow them to go back to their native states.
In an affidavit filed in response to a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) with regard to the issue of stranded migrants, the government said over 3 lakh migrants applied online.
Police are according permissions to individuals who are leaving the state through their own transport. The court was informed that the police issued 23,875 passes and with the help of these passes as many as 1.24 lakh people had already left the state.
The court was also told that over 64,000 people stranded in other states have returned to Telangana after easing of lockdown norms.