Special trains to ferry migrant workers, students stranded due to coronavirus lockdown: Centre
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Friday said that special trains will run to ferry migrant workers, tourists, students and other persons stranded at different places because of the nationwide coronavirus lockdown.
In its order, the Home Ministry said that the special trains will run from point to point on request of both state governments as per protocols for sending and receiving stranded persons.
"Movement of migrant workers, pilgrims, tourists, students and other persons, stranded at difference places, is allowed by special trains to be operated by Ministry of Railways (MoR). MoR will designate nodal officer(s) for coordinating with states and UTs for their movement," the Home Ministry said in a statment.
"MoR will issue detailed guidelines for sale of tickets; and for social distancing and other safety measures to be observed at train stations, train platforms and within the trains," it added.
After the Home Ministry's order, the Railways said that it will run six special trains -- Lingampalli to Hatia, Aluva to Bhubaneswar, Nasik to Lucknow, Nasik to Bhopal, Jaipur to Patna and Kota to Hatia -- for migrant workers, tourists, students and other persons on Friday.
This comes two days after the government issued guidelines allowing interstate travel for stranded migrants, students and labourers.
Following the Centre's order, Punjab, Bihar, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and several other states had asked for trains for the migrants. The Centre, however, had asked the states to make arrangement for the stranded migrants.
"Due to lockdown, migrant workers, pilgrims, tourists, students and other persons are stranded at different places. They would be allowed to move," the MHA had said in its order.
Meanwhile, a special train -- carrying 1,200 migrants -- began its journey on Friday from Lingampally in Telangana to Hatia in Jharkhand, said the Railway officials. The officials further said that the train started its journey at 4.50 am in the morning and will reach Hatia around 11 pm tonight.
The Railways have suspended the passenger, mail and express train services in order to control the spread of the novel coronavirus in the country.
(With PTI inputs)