The union government has asked the state governments to cooperate with the Indian Railways for running more Shramik special trains to expedite the travel of stranded migrant workers.
In a letter to chief secretaries of all states on Monday, union home secretary Ajay Bhalla urged the state governments to allow receiving of all Shramik special trains without any hindrance and facilitate the movement of stranded migrant workers to their native places.
The home secretary said that the state governments and union territories should ensure that migrant workers do not resort to walking on streets or railway tracks. In case they are found in such conditions, they should appropriately be counseled, taken to nearby shelters and provided with food, water, etc till such time they are facilitated to board the Shramik special trains or buses to their native places, the letter added.
The movement of stranded workers has been allowed by the government in buses and special trains.
As of 10 am on Monday, a total number of 468 Shramik special trains have plied on their prescribed routes. Of these, 363 have reached their destination while 105 are on the run, according to the Indian Railways.
Of these 363 trains, 172 have been terminated to Uttar Pradesh, 100 to Bihar, 30 to Madhya Pradesh, 25 to Odisha, 22 to Jharkhand, among other states.
Every Shramik special train has 24 coaches, each with a capacity of 72 seats. However, only 54 people are allowed in a coach and the middle berth is not allotted to any passenger to maintain social distancing norms.
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