Odisha prepares SOP to send stranded migrant workers

Bhubaneswar: With the Centre allowing movement of migrant workers, pilgrims, tourists and students stranded due to the lockdown, the Odisha government has issued a standard operating procedure (SOP) for sending persons stuck in the state to their home states by road or rail.

In a letter to all district collectors and municipal commissioners, Additional chief secretary-cum special relief commissioner (SRC) P K Jena forwarded the SOP to ensure smooth return of about 60,000 “guest workers” to their respective states.

The Odisha government has described the stranded migrant workers as “guest workers”.

The state government has appointed nodal officers for different states to ensure that the people from other states reach their native places safely.

The SOP said that the prior approval of the recipient state is a must before departure of any train/bus from any district/municipal corporation in Odisha. For road journey by means of bus/ vans, the transit pass will be provided by the authorities here.

The counterpart collectors/commissioners of municipal corporation/state co-ordinator in the recipient state should be informed with the details of passengers, destination (district and block) and their mobile numbers.

The SOP said that one of the passengers, having a smartphone, may be designated as the group co-ordinator, whose mobile number may be passed on to the recipient state”s collector/municipal commissioner/co-ordinator.

The destination station/border check point of the recipient state for each train/ bus/ van will be decided by the recipient state government.

It said the returnees should be grouped block- wise/district-wise, while boarding the buses/ vans/ trains, as far as possible, for easier logistics.

As per the MHA guidelines, the passengers have to be screened for health status and only after proper assessment they should be cleared for travel

No person/group of persons should be allowed to travel without appropriate authorization from the state.

There are about 90,000 migrant workers stranded in Odisha. The state government has described them as “guest workers” and have lodged them in different temporary camps where food, medicines and other essential items are provided to them since the lockdown started.

(PTI)

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