The Centre has now asked all States to close the inter-state borders so as to prevent the mass exodus of migrant workers who have become jobless overnight due to suspension of work following the coronavirus outbreak. Now the billion dollar question remains what would be the fate of these vulnerable people, rendered homeless cashless and being forced to sleep on streets and highways with a hungry stomach due to unavailability of transportation services to their native towns/villages!
Now that the Prime Minister has expressed his heart’s desire that he is sorry for the hardships faced by these people, he should now take steps to ensure adequate supply of food and water. Also necessary measures must be taken to provide shelter to these people by keeping in mind the norms of social distancing.
This crisis period should serve as a lesson to the Government. The Centre and the States should at first store sufficient food, water and other basic necessities before initiating any extraordinary measure in future so that related problems can be tackled with maximum efficiency.
Avik Chatterjee, D2/403, Peerless Nagar, Panihati, Kolkata-700114.