Migrant workers special train: A bitter war of words broke out between the government and the Centre over fare being collected from the migrants who are being sent back to their native places by special trains during the lockdown.
The Congress party is leaving no stone unturned to claim credit for bearing the cost of train fares of migrants who are being ferried through special trains to their native places. In a recent incident, a Congress MLA from Punjab visited the Bathinda railway station to impress upon the passengers that their ticket fare was being paid by party president Sonia Gandhi.
A video of the incident was shared by Union minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, who slammed the act by the Congress leaders and termed the party “desperate, insecure, intolerant and opportunist”.
MLA has been identified as Amarinder Raja Warring of Gidderbaha constituency. He arrived at the Bathinda station on Sunday to see off the migrants heading to Muzaffarpur in a special train. The video shows him accompanied by district Congress leaders. Each passenger was handed a pamphlet, with a declaration, “Aapki ticket ka kharcha Sonia Gandhi ne diya hai.. (Your ticket fare has been paid by AICC president Sonia Gandhi).”
“The Congress party, Punjab CM Capt Amarinder Singh, PPCC president Sunil Jakhar are sending you. Everything is written in this pamphlet, you can read it at ease while going in the train,” it reads.
— Gajendra Singh Shekhawat (@gssjodhpur) May 11, 2020
The Congress leaders also made a public announcement from the tower of the railway station delivering the same message before the train left. They, however, urged them to come back soon.
Notably, a bitter war of words broke out between the government and the Centre over fare being collected from the migrants who are being sent back to their native places by special trains during the lockdown. The government and Indian Railways have clarified that the 15% of the fare is being collected by the states and not the migrants.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi had earlier criticised the government and said that the decision to collect fare from migrants was ‘disturbing’. She had announced that the party’s state units will pat the train fare of the migrants.