Centre permits stranded migrants, students, tourists to go home during lockdown

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In a huge relief to millions of people, mostly migrant workers, students and tourists stranded in different parts of the country, the Union home ministry on Wednesday finally allowed states to repatriate them to reach home

The guidelines issued by the home ministry said that people who do not have coronavirus symptoms can avail the facility. The order asked the states to appoint nodal bodies and draw up protocols for the migrants' movement.

The central government has, however, refused to run special trains to take them home as demanded by some states such as Maharashtra, said a Hindustan Times report. They would have to travel in buses. The moving person(s) would be screened and those found asymptomatic would be allowed to proceed, the order said.

The only condition that the home ministry has imposed on the travel of these people is that the government of states, from where these people begin the journey and the government in the destination state, should clear the travel.

Several states such as Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh had already started bringing back people from their states home though the central guidelines till this evening did not permit such travel. This had put chief ministers of states such as Bihar under immense pressure.

Nitish Kumar, who has been battered by the opposition in his state, had insisted that he would not take any step that violates the central guidelines and had asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to come up with a protocol.

Image Credit: India TV

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