Covid migrant crisis: Finance Minister Sitharaman said that the Centre was trying to help migrant workers but it was unfortunate that some of them were still on the road.
Migrant crisis in lockdown: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Sunday slammed former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi for allegedly doing “drama” and “politicising” migrant crisis in the country. She said the Congress was playing politics over migrant workers as the crisis does not relate to one state but the entire country and this was the time for everyone to speak and behave responsibly. During a press conference on Covid-19 stimulus package, she was asked about migrants who were walking back home on their feet. A reporter said that the Congress had offered to provide buses to the migrant workers if Centre gave it the permission. Incidentally, this came a day after Rahul Gandhi met with some migrant workers on road and arranged vehicles to their destination.
Responding to the question, FM Sitharaman said that the Centre was trying to help migrant workers but it was unfortunate that some of them were still on the road. She said that the Centre had asked all the states to confirm the number of train trips they wanted to facilitate safe journeys of these migrant workers. “Why are the states under Congress or its alliance partners not asking for more trains? They should ask for more trains and help migrants reach home,” the Finance Minister said.
#WATCH “I want to tell the opposition party that on the issue of migrants we all must work together.We are working with all states on this issue. With folded hands, I say to Sonia Gandhi ji that we must speak & deal with our migrants more responsibly”: Finance Minister Sitharaman pic.twitter.com/fV96VwLPEW
— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2020
Calling Rahul Gandhi’s meeting with migrant workers a “drama”, Sithraman said that it would have been better for him to help migrants with their luggage and have conversation while walking instead of stopping them on the road and killing their time to have a chat. “What happened yesterday when migrants were stopped on the road for conversation, is the time for such an act? Wasn’t it a drama? I want to say this to the opposition party with folded hands – we have to work together for migrant workers. Why such politics on migrant labourers? As if migrants are in crisis in other states, not in their states. With folded hands, I say to Sonia Gandhi ji – let’s speak and deal with our migrants more responsibly,” Sitharaman said. She further asked the Congress why it was not directing its states to call for more trains from the Centre.