The ministry of home affairs (MHA) on Tuesday urged the states and Union Territories to carry out a series of new measures for mitigating the distress of the migrant workers.
In a letter to chief secretaries of states, Union home secretary Ajay Bhalla said that fear of COVID-19 infection and apprehension of loss of livelihood are the main driving factors for the movement of stranded workers towards their homes.
Bhalla suggested that more special trains for the migrant workers could be operated by proactive coordination between States and with Ministry of Railways.
He also said that arrangement of designated rest places with adequate facilities for sanitation, food and healthcare, could be made by the States on routes where migrants are known to be already travelling on foot.
“District Authorities may guide workers moving on foot to designated rest places, nearby bus terminals or railway stations by arranging transportation,” Bhalla said in his letter.
Bhalla also asked district authorities to involve NGO representatives at rest places to look after the needs of migrant workers.
“Special attention may be given to the specific requirements of women, children and elderly amongst the migrant workers,” he added.
He also asked the state governments to increase the number of buses for transporting migrants and allow entry of buses carrying migrants at inter-state border.
“More clarity may be given about departure of trains/ buses, as lack of clarity coupled with rumours caused unrest amongst the workers,” he added.
“Enlisting the migrants with their addresses and contact numbers. This may be helpful in contact tracing in due course,” he said.