Telangana sends 1st migrant train to Jharkhand

Two days ago, The Daily Guardian reported that migrant labourers from Jharkhand, working in IITHyderabad, had attacked the police and campus authorities. On Friday, those same people found themselves lucky to get a seat in a special train that would take them from Telangana to Jharkhand. A non-stop train left the Lingampalli station, near IIT-Hyderabad, at 5:30 am with around 1,200 migrant workers. They were accommodated in 24 coaches, with around 55 workers sitting in each coach. All passengers maintained social distancing and were screened before being allowed to board the train.

The Telangana government quietly did the entire operation of bringing the migrant workers from their camps by buses and cars to the Lingampalli railway station, located on the outskirts of Hyderabad. They were brought in night because the government was wary that this news would bring hordes of migrants on the streets and at the station. A lot of migrants, who were left behind, later visited the station asking about the next train. When asked by The Daily Guardian, the CPRO said that there were no orders to run any more trains. “This is the only train from Hyderabad to Jharkhand. We arranged it at the request of the government of Telangana and the Central government. State minister Srinivas Yadav, however, believes more trains needed to be run.

“There are 15 lakh migrant labourers in Telangana. It’s difficult to send them in buses, so I request the Central government to arrange more trains,” he said. Hearing the news, several migrant workers visited the station to enquire about the next train. “I wanted to go to Jharkhand. I protested also. But I was not informed about it. I enquired with the police and the station master here. They said they had no idea. It’s not good. They should have announced about the train in advance,” said a stranded young worker. The Telangana government made all the arrangements in the train. Lakhs of migrant workers have been stranded across the country due to the nationwide lockdown. And they are desperate to hit back home.

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