The Andhra Pradesh government is in the process of sending home 33,000 stranded migrant labourers by 22 shramik special trains this week and taking steps to bring back those travelling on foot to the nearest relief centers in the state as a temporary measure.
The government has already arranged 31 trains- nine for Bihar, Odisha-five, UP, Jharkhand and Rajasthan- four each, Maharashtra-three and Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh-one each- from the state facilitating the transportation of 39,000 people to various destinations, an official release said on Sunday.
"We will be running five trains for 7,500 people today (May 17). We have planned another 22 shramik trains during this week for 33,000 people and NoCs from the receiving states are being pursued, it said adding top most priority was being given to send them home," it said.
Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has given instructions to arrange buses to transport migrant workers to the nearest relief centers.
All the police check posts were provided with staff from revenue department to persuade the migrant labourers to stay at the relief centers with a promise to send them by shramik trains.
As many as 79 food counters were set up along the national highway nearest to the check posts to provide food and water.
The Centre had on Friday asked states and union territories to provide food and shelter to migrant workers if they are found walking on roads and railways tracks, and ensure they board special trains to reach their native places.
"Collectors were asked to put up banners on highways in Odiya and Hindi explaining the arrangements made for the migrant labourers going on foot. Once they reach the relief centers, instructions are given that people belonging to AP are to be sent to their native districts by APSRTC buses free of cost. Similarly, those belonging to other states will be sent by Shramik trains duly transporting them to the embarkation points free of cost," it added.
During the last three days, around 4,661 migrant workers going by walk have been stopped at various check posts and taken to 62 relief centers.
Out of them 485 people were walking to various places within the state, while the remaining 4,176 belonged to other states, the note said.
State Chief Secretary Nilam Sawhney had detailed discussions with her Odisha counterpart, who agreed to receive the migrant labourers of the neighbouring state at Ganjam with prior intimation.