BH CORRESPONDENT, Lucknow/New Delhi: Huge number of jobless workers from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar find themselves in a spot due to the mandatory lockdown in the country due to coronavirus pandemic. In desperation, many have been seen walking or cycling hundreds of kilometres to reach their native places. Some have even died on the way due to exhaustion or being killed in road mishaps. In desperation, people have even used ambulances, container trucks to smuggle themselves out.
The news of the plight of migrants stranded on Delhi-UP border also reached the corridors of UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath who promptly arranged a fleet of buses to transport the stranded people. According to the news reports, Adityanath had called transportation officers, bus drivers and conductors on the night of Mar 27 to discuss the issue of stranded migrants. On a war footing, over 500 buses were requisitioned to transport the stranded from Delhi and drop them to their respective hometowns in UP and Bihar.
Over a lakh people have been ferried and Adityanath on Saturday issued directions to officials to quarantine them in specially prepared camps for two-weeks as a precautionary measure. Adityanath claimed that in the last three days, over a lakh people have come to UP from other states. Their names, addresses and phone numbers have been made available to the district magistrates and they are being closely monitored.
The chief minister also issued directives that these people be kept in quarantine and arrangements for their food and other daily needs be fulfilled. No one in the state should remain hungry during the lockdown,” the chief minister was quoted as saying.
While this was happening, a political slugfest erupted between BJP and AAP over movement of migrant workers from Delhi on social media over the handling of the issue. Both sides accused each other of playing “dirty politics” and blamed the other for the plight of the migrant workers. BJP leaders in Uttar Pradesh accused the AAP government of trying to force migrant workers in the national capital to leave the city but cutting off essential supplies like water and electricity.
AAP’s Manish Sisodia accused the BJP’s Yogi Adityanath government of spreading lies.
“I am very sad that BJP leaders are doing petty politics during the coronavirus pandemic. @myogiadityanath’s government has alleged that @ArvindKejriwal ordered to disconnect power and water supply to migrants in Delhi, forcing them to leave. It is the time to unite with seriousness to save the country, not for cheap politics,” Sisodia said in his tweet.