” Migrants on Their Way Back Home With Pain ” – May 30, 2020.
Two days ago a lady carrying her child and travelling by the Shramik Special Train from Ahmedabad to Muzaffarpur died at the Muzaffarpur railway station. It was a heart-breaking scene that the kid without realising anything and completely ignorant of what is happening around tried to lift the bedsheet that covered the dead body ( mother’s body ).
Everyone is aware that motherly love is the embodiment of binding one another not just in the family but in the entire community. Everyone who was witness to that heart-rending scene in the train must have left with a sinking heart. The photo has already gone viral in social media and may not be any big news now, as I pen this. But, it is the lesson learnt that is important.
That the lady has not been provided with proper food and died of hunger was the reason cited by Sanjay Yadav, Special Assistant to Tejesvi Yadav ( son of former Bihar CM, Lalu Yadav). This was communicated through his Twitter feed along with a video and few words.
Deprived of jobs and lack of decent means of living, migrants are now returning to their native heath. Government has arranged special trains to transport them to their respective places even as many try to leave on their own using bicycles or even simply walking it.
Despite proper arrangements for travel by special trains, complaints regarding food and water service have been big and strong. Trains also get stopped in several places unduly and excessively or guided in different routes making the journey tedious.
Supreme Court has instructed that migrants should not be charged for their travel ; when migrants wait for trains the respective State Government should take care of their needs in terms of food and water ; when migrants travel, the Railway Administration should provide these needs to them. In a 11 page note, details regarding these are specified clearly in terms of responsibilities of State Governments, Railway Administration, and others concerned.
Railway Administration’s request as necessary conditions for travel to be permitted – individuals be free of blood pressure, heart diseases, cancer, poor immunity responses, pregnant women, and individuals aged less than 10 years and more than 65 years – are felt unsympathetic, unwarranted, unsentimental, and unsustainable.
These migrants will for sure be more safe, comfortable, and secure in their ‘homes’ rather than in their workplaces. Their burdens will be lighter there certainly. When we see them we remember : “these people are people”.
These helpless, impoverished, faceless migrants clamoring for help at every place should not be terrified but happy the next time they board the train.
It is the unbounded responsibility of the Government, States, and the Railway Administration to make fair arrangements to send them back homes.
” Dieu avec nous “
Saturday, May 30, 2020 – 11.19 a.m. (IST)
Tidbit : ” Migrants should move as a matter of genuine choice “.