After our report on their plight, the group received support from a TNM member who helped fly them back to West Bengal.

Eight migrant workers stuck in Chennai for a month get help fly home to West Bengal
Coronavirus Migrant crisis Monday, June 08, 2020 - 09:20

Eight migrant workers who were stuck in Chennai for over the past 30 days due to the lockdown, and had been walking every day to the station hoping for a train back home to West Bengal, finally left for their homes on Sunday.

On June 2, TNM had reported on the plight of eight migrant workers from West Bengal, who had been stranded in Chennai due to the lockdown. The group of eight hails from Nodakhali village, in the district of South 24 Parganas. They had lost their homes to cyclone Amphan, which made landfall three hours away near Bakkhali.

Stuck in Chennai while their families were in the village, this group of eight was desperate to get back home. Every day for over a month, they had been walking between the Chennai Central and temporary camps, searching for trains to Howrah and getting turned away near the station.

With all their income drying up, the group was surviving on two meals a day from the Amma Canteen and waiting endlessly near the railway station.

Read: 33 days, still no train: Migrants walk to Chennai Central daily hoping to return to Bengal

After we reported on their situation, Abhilash Sridharan, a TNM member who works in the IT sector, promptly got in touch with us and raised funds with the help of a crowd-funding page.

Within a day and a half, we were able to arrange funds for the entire group to fly back to Kolkata. As their tickets were being processed, another family of four who also hailed from Nodakhali and wanted to get back home, got in touch with us. They had a four-year-old child and the mother was hesitant to take a train with him.

The funds raised were enough to book flight tickets for all 12 people. The balance has been used to support them once they reach West Bengal.

On Sunday, all 12 of them flew out from Chennai and landed at Kolkata at 7:50 pm. They now have the huge task of rebuilding their cyclone-hit houses.

This was possible because of the kind gesture from a member of the TNM community. We thank everybody who helped in making their journey possible. 

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