New Delhi: India is nearing the final weekend of the scheduled date for the end of the second round of coronavirus lockdown. While the cases continue to soar beyond the 35,000-mark, the recovery rate has improved to 25 per cent in a fortnight, the Health Ministry said on Thursday. However, thousands of migrant workers, labourers, students, tourists and other people continue to be stuck at state borders with the governments debating on how to get them back. So how are the states planning to bring them home? Also Read - Temples to Open in Karnataka From June 1, Fairs And Fests to Remain Restricted
At least seven states have urged the Centre to provide trains to transport the stranded people to their home states as buses are not a feasible option. The transport of migrant workers and other stranded people is scheduled to begin over this weekend. Also Read - When Will Schools, Colleges Reopen in India? Read Government's Plan Here
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The different states’ requests come a day after guidelines of the Ministry of Home Affairs allowing movement of stranded people by road on buses. However, these people may have to travel long distances which is not practical to be covered in buses.
For instance, the Tamil Nadu government on Thursday wrote a letter to PM Modi, saying the state has around 4 lakh migrant workers and most of them are from Bihar and West Bengal. Under such situation, moving them by road in buses is not feasible.
The Home Ministry said that it will take a decision on the movement of migrants by train. According to reports, the Indian Railways is planning to run as many as 400 trains for the movement of migrants.
Although there is no official notice from the national transporter, the health ministry said that an advisory over the decision to resume rail services should be expected at the end of this week.
Meanwhile, states like West Bengal, Delhi, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab are preparing themselves with quarantine wards and treatment facilities for a dominant in-surge of migrant workers.
Will Roadways be Resumed?
The Home Ministry has announced on Wednesday that new guidelines will be issued in the coming days for relaxations on the lockdown that expires on May 3. These are expected to also include some relaxations on inter and intra-state movement.
Meanwhile, as per an order dated April 29, the Gurugram administration has decided to further limit cross-border transit from May 1. No vehicles apart from essential services will be allowed to travel between Delhi and Gurugram, without prior permission.