Migrant workers depart as ‘lockdown’ returns in West Bengal

Migrant workers depart as ‘lockdown’ returns in West Bengal

Biswabrata Goswami

KRISHNAGAR, 15 MAY: Many workers in Krishnagar and nearby areas were seen busy getting buses from Krishnagar bus stand today soon after the state government announced restrictions or partial lockdown from tomorrow for a fortnight.

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Most of them from Murshidabad and nearby blocks in Nadia are, however, planning to return to Nadia after the lockdown is lifted.

“I work as a construction worker in Chapra. Since the government has announced the lockdown, I decided to return to my hometown in Murshidabad. So, I reached Krishnagar bus stand to get a bus,” said Anil Sheikh (45), a migrant worker from Murshidabad.

Women migrant works throng at Krishnagar bus stand to get vehicles soon after the state government announced partial lockdown from tomorrow

Despite the fear of getting infected during the journey, they said that they have no other option. “If we stay in Nadia during the lockdown, we would struggle to make both ends meet as most of us don’t have much savings. Therefore, my husband and I decided to go to our home State of Bihar,” said Lakshmi, who is travelling with her three-year-old child.

When asked about the exodus, an administrative officer said, “The construction and the continuous process industries are allowed to operate. So there won’t be a lack of jobs for migrants and they need not take vehicles. Anyway, I will look into the issue.”

Image by Debabrata Malakar.

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