Are migrant workers allowed to travel back to their hometown during the lockdown?
Initially, migrant workers were not allowed to travel back to their hometown during the lockdown, so as to contain the spread of the virus. They have to be provided with essential services such as food, etc. and shelter in respective states they are in. Now they can travel using the Shramik special trains as well as by flight.
Special Trains: The Shramik special trains are trains which can be accessed by migrant workers, pilgrims, tourists, students and other persons stranded at different places due to the lockdown. These special trains run from one the boarding station to the final station(without any stops). The Ministry of Railways and the Ministry of Home Affairs decide the routes and movement of the trains. Before entering they will be compulsorily screened and only those with no symptoms of COVID-19 can travel on these trains. All passengers travelling have to maintain social distancing and comply with the health checkup protocol of the destination State/UT.
For example in Delhi, migrant labourers who want to return to their native places via Shramik Special trains will have to register themselves online. Migrants stranded in the capital, wishing to depart through Shramik Special trains or buses, may apply on https://epass.jantasamvad.org/train/passenger/. After online registration, the Delhi government will ensure proper planning for the movement of the migrants. Once the application is confirmed, the migrants would be informed via texts on their registered cellphone numbers about the details of trains or buses and the departure timings.
Flights: Air travel of passengers, both domestic and international, was prohibited since 25 March 2020. A list of guidelines have been passed by the Ministry of Civil Aviation for resuming air travel of passengers for domestic flights starting from the 25th of May, 2020. Read more here.
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