New Delhi: After waiting for nine hours for food, thousands of migrant workers went on a rampage in Sendhwa town near Madhya Pradesh-Maharashtra border and pelted stones at the police. Cellphone videos from the spot showed hundreds of people, screaming and running on the shoulder beside the National Highway 3. Also Read - Coronavirus in Noida: 27 Fresh Cases Reported in a Day, Total Active Cases Now 209; 4-Year-Old Recovers
“People here are travelling with month-old babies. The Maharashtra government sent us here, but our own government is holding us up. We have been here since last night, hungry and thirsty,” said Sunit Mishra, who works in Pune. The hapless people are stranded in a jungle with no security. “No one cares about us,” said Mishra who wants to go to Satna. Also Read - COVID-19: Six-fold Jump in Cases, Five-fold Surge in Fatalities After a Month: Is Worst Yet to Come For India?
Barwani collector Amit Tomar said that stone-pelting took place as some migrants felt after the buses left that there would not be any more vehicles for those left behind, but officials reassured them and calmed them down. Also Read - J&K Admin Asks Staff to Attend Work From Today, Order Doesn't Go Down Well With Lower-rung Employees
The state government said that about 15,000 migrant labourers were taken from Sendhwa border (Bijasen Ghat border) to other places in the past three days while there has been a huge influx from Maharashtra.
“The maximum pressure of migrants is being faced at Bijasan Ghat on the border of Sendhwa (MP-Maharashtra). 5,000 to 6,000 migrant workers are reaching there every day,” a government statement said.
Migrant workers were being transported by buses for free to Dewas transit point after providing them food and conducting medical tests, it said. From Dewas, they are sent to Sagar, Chhatarpur, Guna and Shivpuri by buses.
Subsequently, migrant workers of other districts of the state are transported to their home districts and those from Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand and Bihar are ferried to the border of UP, the state government said.
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan appealed migrants not to panic. “Do not panic in this hour of crisis, the Government of Madhya Pradesh will ensure that every migrant worker reaches home. Arrangements for food, temporary stay, medical check-up and buses have been made. This arrangement will continue until all the migrant workers reach their destinations,” Chouhan said.