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Lockdown Impact: Thousands Of Migrant Workers Gather At Mumbai’s Bandra Station Hoping To Get Back Home

At least 3,000 migrant workers from different locations of the city gathered at Bandra (West) railway station demanding authorities to arrange transport means to send them back to their hometowns.

 

Mumbai: In a shocking development hours after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced an extension of nationwide lockdown till May 3, thousands of migrant workers in Mumbai thronged to Bandra (W) railway station wanting to go back to their villages.

According to reports, at least 3,000 migrant workers from different locations of the city gathered at Bandra (West) railway station demanding authorities to arrange transport means to send them back to their hometowns.

The agitated migrant workers said that they are not ready for lockdown extension till May 4 as they do not have food and money to survive.

The migrants demanded that they could not continue to live here away from their homes or families in different parts of India with the nationwide lockdown getting extended till May 3 on Tuesday. They asked the police to make arrangements for suitable transportation facilities to enable them to go to their respective towns and villages.

A large posse of police was on the site to bring the crowd under control even as videos of the incident went viral on social media. The Mumbai Police, which attempted to cajole them from gathering in such huge numbers, resorted to a mild lathi charge when sections of the restive crowd seemed to be going out of control.

Soon after the incident came to light, Maharashtra minister Aditya Thackeray took to Twitter and blamed Central government for such situation.

“The current situation at Bandra Station, now dispersed or even the rioting in Surat is a result of the Union Govt not being able to take a call on arranging a way back home for migrant labour. They don’t want food or shelter, they want to go back home,” Aditya tweeted.

“Right from the day the trains have been shut down, the State had requested trains to run for 24 hours more so that migrant labour could go back home. CM Uddhav Thackeray ji raised this issue in the PM- CM Video Conf as well requesting a roadmap for migrant labour to reach home,” he said.

Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray is likely to address a press conference where he said to be talking about the plight of migrants who have started walking from Mumbai, Pune and other big cities to their homes in other parts of Maharashtra as well as other states of the country amid the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown.

Most of these migrants are daily wage labourers who are desperately attempting to get home during this period and have even earlier resorted to walking because lockdown does not permit traveling in vehicles and passenger trains are also closed.

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