As Maharashtra battles tsunami-like Covid second wave, migrants pack-up again

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Migrants are apprehensive of a complete lockdown in Maharashtra as Covid circumstances have been surging in the previous couple of days.

Barely six months after they returned, 1000’s of migrants working in Mumbai and Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) are actually re-packing their baggage to return residence as Maharashtra is within the grip of a tsunami-like Covid ‘second-wave’.

With evening curfews, stringent daytime restrictions and a weekend lockdown imposed throughout the state, migrants from completely different elements of India are in a state of semi-panic, as every day new infections within the state soar in half-lakh-plus vary.

A majority of them, particularly the expert and semi-skilled staff, have been introduced again from their houses in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Karnataka, Gujarat, Telangana, Odisha with nice difficulties by their employers after the phase-wise Unlockdown that began in August 2020.

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They have been employed within the lakhs of small or medium industries, small factories, workshops, warehouses, accommodations, eating places, supply chains, huge and small places of work or industrial institutions, and even massive shops or procuring centres and in farmlands in rural areas.

Barely had they settled down up to now six months or so, the spectre of one more ‘mega-migration’ stares on the migrant staff within the state, although there aren’t any hysterical reactions thus far.

The Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, Aam Aadmi Party and others have slammed the Maha Vikas Aghadi authorities for the semi-lockdown situation which is taking part in havoc with the peoples’ livelihood.

“Last year, the migrants experienced first-hand the tortures of fleeing to their small towns or villages surmounting great hurdles. This time, they are mentally better prepared and are planning to clear out before the situation worsens,” Dharavi Leather Goods Manufacturing Association Working President Rajesh Sonawane advised IANS.

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Sonawane mentioned that migrant crowds are swelling at numerous railway stations within the MMR with many resorting to hiring touts to get them confirmed tickets to board the outbound trains.

The Dharavi Garments Manufacturers Association spokesperson and Congress BMC Municipal Corporator Haji Babbu Khan mentioned that this yr, the Covid scenario seems many occasions worse than in 2020.

“Last year, the people were left to fend for themselves and somehow survived. There were helping hands who gave them food, shelter, medicines. This year, that is missing as even the NGOs and charitable organisations have exhausted their resources. Now, the situation is grimmer than 2020,” Khan advised IANS.

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Sonawane, Khan and others say that whereas 80 % of Dharavi’s estimated migrant labour pressure had returned by October, now greater than half of them are making ready to return over the subsequent few days or so.

A Mulund hotelier C.D. Shetty mentioned with the present norms allowing solely residence supply of parcels, the staff are dealing with an unsure future again and need to return to their houses.

“We don’t want them to go back and are ready to care for them, but for how long Without income, how can we keep bearing the expenses with absolutely no relief or financial help from the government,” rued Shetty.

Refuting reviews that migrants are allegedly thronging main railway termini to flee the state, Central Railway Spokesperson Shivaji Sutar mentioned “this is far from the truth”.

“There is no panic booking of any kind. The crowds seen at the stations are people with routine bookings, the extra trains deployed are part of the restoration process on since June 2020 and we have achieved nearly 75 per cent so far, and the regular summer specials are introduced to cater to the annual holiday rush,” Sutar advised IANS.

A diamond polisher working with a Mumbai agency, Aseem Shah mentioned that he returned to the town post-Diwali, however didn’t count on issues would deteriorate again so quickly.

“I am waiting and watching not rushing home immediately But if needed, I have saved enough to ensure my family and I can leave the city comfortably if things worsen. Given such disruptions, I am not sure whether it would be worthwhile to return to Mumbai in future,” a glum Shah mentioned.

Meanwhile, shopkeepers, merchants, businessmen, producer and allied communities in Mumbai, MMR and different main manufacturing centres have been protesting in opposition to the newly imposed norms because the previous three days.

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