New Delhi: The Narendra Modi government, under fire from the opposition over the ongoing migrant exodus in the country, is preparing to launch an ‘image correction exercise’ in a bid to blunt criticism for its policy on migrants, a report in NDTV has claimed. Also Read - Madhya Pradesh: Mango Truck Carrying Migrants Amid Lockdown Overturns, 5 Died, 11 Injured
Notably, the government is likely to launch the exercise as a part of its celebrations to mark the first anniversary of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s massive win in the general elections last year. Also Read - Who is Paying For Migrants? Delhi, Bihar at Loggerheads, Maharashtra Says Odisha, Bihar, Tamil Nadu Not Willing to Take Workers Back
PM Modi and the BJP emerged victorious on May 23 with a second consecutive majority, winning 303 seats, up 21 from 282 in May 2014. Also Read - 'Not Getting Expected Support From Bengal Govt on Special Trains For Migrants': Shah Upset With Mamata
As part of the exercise, says the NDTV report quoting government sources, a booklet publicising the government’s achievements in the last 12 months, will be released and distributed. It is to showcase achievements of all the ministries, highlighting in particular efforts to benefit the poor, women, farmers and the youth.
The booklet will also reportedly contain everything that the Centre says it has done for the people, especially migrants.
Ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in an 8 PM address to the nation on March 24, announced a nationwide lockdown, desperate migrant workers have resolutely tried to return to their native places. In absence of public transport, which is shut due to the lockdown, migrant families, including children, have been forced to walk back to their native places-in many cases, from one state to another.
Many migrant workers, in fact, died en route to their native places.
Last Wednesday, the Centre, finally, allowed interstate movement of migrants and others stranded due to the lockdown, in government buses, in a bid to help them reach their homes. Two days later, it also allowed state governments to run ‘Sharamik Special’ trains, ceding to their requests in their regard.
The lockdown, meanwhile, has been extended twice-first from April 14 to May 3, and then to May 17.