PortandTerminal.com, March 29, 2020
NEW DELHI, INDIA – There are heartbreaking reports coming out of India. Desperate migrants workers facing the brunt of coronavirus pandemic as they are left stranded without work, food or money and no means to reach their native villages following the nation-wide coronavirus lockdown.
India’s federal government has now asked states to quarantine migrant workers for 14 days and prevent the movement of people across borders to contain the spread of the coronavirus across the South Asian nation.
“All of these migrant labourers have to stay in government camps for 14 days. They would not be allowed to return to their homes,”Indian Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya
The number of confirmed cases rose to 987, including 25 deaths, Lav Agarwal, a senior official of the health ministry, said Sunday. No one believes the number to be accurate. If it were true, it would mean that India, a poor nation of over 1.3 billion people, has the same number of cases as Iceland.
Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a 21-day lockdown in the country on Tuesday, there’s been a large movement of people out of large cities like the capital New Delhi and the financial center of Mumbai, trying to reach their homes after their work disappeared overnight. This is a violation of lockdown measures to maintain social distance, the home ministry said in a statement on Sunday.
Migrant workers will be kept in state-run quarantine facilities, while the federal government has asked states to provide shelter and food to those stranded due to the lockdown measures.
Television footage showed tens of thousands of desperate migrant workers and their children defying the lockdown to travel on foot along highways to reach their home towns and villages after transport services were stopped.
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