‘With folded hands’: Karnataka CM urges migrants not to leave, special trains cancelled

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Updated: May 6, 2020 1:50:05 PM

Karnataka lockdown: CM Yediyurappa met builders and called for resumption of construction and other industrial activities. He has urged the migrants not to eave the state.

Thermal screening of migrant workers being conducted at at a railway station during the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown. (PTI photo. File)

The Karnataka government has urged migrant workers not to leave and stay in the state, while ensuring accommodation and food. The government has already suspended inter-state movement of workers by trains to halt their movement out of the state as it prepares for a graded resumption of economic activities. The decision to suspend the inter-state movement of workers was taken hours after Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa met builders and called for resumption of construction and other industrial activities.

The Chief Minister said that COVID-19 situation in the state is under control. Barring the red zones, he said, businesses and industrial activities will be resumed at the earliest.

Appealing to migrant labourers stranded in the state, he said, “I appeal to labourers with folded hands don’t pay heed to any rumours, it is the responsibility of the government to see to it that you get work at the place you were working… don’t take a hasty decision of going to your natives. Stay here and work, as in the past.”

He later tweeted that directions have been given to ministers to convince migrants not to leave and make all arrangements for their stay.

“Directions were given to the ministers to convince the labourers to refrain from returning home states,” he tweeted.

According to the labour department’s records taken during the pandemic, Karnataka is home to more than two lakh migrant labourers from different parts of the country. More than 80,000 of them are from Orissa and about 70,000 are from Bihar.

The state had earlier urged the Indian Railways to run two special trains each day for five days starting May 2 except on May 6 when three trains were arranged for Dhanbad in Jharkhand. However, all three have been cancelled now.

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