Coronavirus Outbreak: MHA asks states to stop mass exodus of migrant labourers as India struggles to curb disease spread

The Union Home Ministry on Friday asked state governments to prevent a mass exodus of migrant agriculture labourers, industrial workers and unorganised sector employees from their workplaces to hometowns amid a 21-day nationwide lockdown to combat the coronavirus.

Press Trust of India March 27, 2020 15:47:02 IST
Coronavirus Outbreak: MHA asks states to stop mass exodus of migrant labourers as India struggles to curb disease spread

New Delhi: The Union Home Ministry on Friday asked state governments to prevent a mass exodus of migrant agriculture labourers, industrial workers and unorganised sector employees from their workplaces to hometowns amid a 21-day nationwide lockdown to combat the coronavirus .

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Groups of Indian daily wage labourers walk to their homes hundreds of kilometres away following a 21-day lockdown. AP

In an advisory to all states and Union territories, the home ministry said they should also make arrangements for uninterrupted supply of essential commodities to hotels, working women hostels so that they continue to live in existing facilities.

"The home ministry has issued an advisory to States/UTs to prevent the mass exodus of migrant agricultural labourers, industrial workers, and unorganised sector workers, so as to prevent the spread of COVID19," an official spokesperson said.

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The states and UTs have also been advised to make these vulnerable groups aware of measures taken by the government, including the provision of free food grains and other essential items through PDS, and streamline the distribution system.

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"This would help prevent the exodus of such people," the spokesperson said.

The home ministry has also advised the states and UTs to ensure that hotels, rented accommodations, hostels etc., continue to remain functional and delivery of essential items is streamlined, so that students, working women hostel inmates, etc., are allowed to continue in existing facilities observing precautions.

The coronavirus -enforced lockdown has triggered a mass exodus of migrant workers across the country.

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