Andhra Pradesh

NGOs reach out to migrant workers

They provide food, water, refreshments and footwear

Post lockdown 3.0, the desperation among migrants to return home has increased and many are finding different means to reach home. While some are boarding trucks and vans, many others are seen walking back or cycling, covering hundreds of kilometres.

Migrants from States such as Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand or Odisha can be seen walking or cycling on the NH, pasing through the city, carrying their belongings. Women are seen walking with children in their arms and baggage on their head.

Pritam Singh from Arrah district in Bihar has been walking for over 10 days from Chennai along with his wife and four-year-old daughter and he expects to reach Arrah in the next 10 days. Exhausted and famished, but he is determined to reach his home.

In such distressing scenario, a few NGOs, social activists and general public are coming in aid of the migrants.

In the month of May, the temperature soars and it is disturbing to see the migrants walking or cycling back home. We have decided to organise refreshments kiosks at different locations, across the NH from NAD Kotha Road to Anandapuram to provide them some food, water and refreshments, says V.S. Krishna of Human Rights Forum (HRF).

Supporting Mr. Krishna's initiative logistically, Association for Urban and Tribal Development (AUTD) have organised two stalls.

“We are providing some curd rice, buttermilk and water. Just basic refreshments to keep them healthy and going,” says Pragada Vasu of AUTD. The AUTD on Saturday distributed 1,000 food packets between Anakapalle and Anandapuram Junction to migrant workers who have been going on foot to their destinations in Odisha, Jharkhand and Bihar.

During the distribution of food, majority of the workers requested the organisers to arrange transport to reach their destinations. Those working at power station and in rice mills at Atchyuthapuram alleged negligence and said they were not given information about transport arrangements by the government.

Ranga Rao, former Head of the Department Social Work, Andhra University, also shares a similar concern. “I shall do what little bit I can do, to give some solace to the migrants and make them feel that we are with them,” he says.

Ramana Murthy of Leader People Service, has set-up a stall near NAD Kotha Road to distribute chappals for free.

“It is difficult to walk bear foot during this peak summer. So we though that why not we provide some footwear, which can give them some comfort,” says he.

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Printable version | Jun 3, 2020 12:13:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/ngos-reach-out-to-migrant-workers/article31609460.ece

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