Other States

Videos of migrant workers enjoying dance, liquor, cannabis at Bihar quarantine centres go viral

Representational Image

Representational Image  

These videos have surfaced amid social media footage of migrant workers protesting against lack of basic amenities at the centres.

In a video, which went viral on social media on Tuesday, migrant workers are seen enjoying a dance performance reportedly at a quarantine centre at Karrakh village under the Bibhutipur police station in Samastipur district.

The dance performance was said to have been organised by a local leader as part of a “cultural programme” to entertain the over 80 migrants quarantined at the centre on Monday night.

In the video, at least four women are seen dancing to music under night bulbs as the inmates watch. The dancers were said to be brought from outside the district.

‘Action will be taken’

Later, the local administration said strict action would be taken against those found guilty after a probe.

“We’re taking cognizance and action will be taken action accordingly. We’ve also installed a TV there for the entertainment of migrants but the administration doesn’t permit any other entertainment from outside,” said a local official.

Another video showed some migrants quarantined reportedly at the Sundarpatti middle school in Pakridayal of Motihari district drinking liquor. A scuffle allegedly broke out between them on some issue and a leg of a person was broken.

Some villagers are also said to have joined the party and the brawl. Later, they fled the centre leaving behind some liquor bottles and their motorbikes.

Another video that went viral on social media showed some migrants enjoying ‘ganja’ (cannabis) reportedly at a quarantine centre at Amdabad block in Katihar district.

Protests continue

Official records said that over 5 lakh migrants have come back to Bihar and thousands are returning everyday to be housed at over 6,000 quarantine centres set up by the State government at the block and panchayat level.

Meanwhile, videos of migrants protesting against lack of basic amenities, stale and inadequate food and dirty toilets keep going viral from different districts on social media.

“We cannot use the overflowing toilets and when we go for open defecation in agricultural fields behind the centre, villagers chase us away with lathis due to Coronavirus threat…where should we go to relieve ourselves” asks a migrant from West Champaran district in a video that went viral on social media on Wednesday.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and top officials have regularly been appealing to them to have patience and everything will be in order soon at the quarantine centres.

Recently, the principal State Disaster Management Department Secretary Pratyaya Amrit, who is also the COVID-19 nodal officer, had warned migrants that the government would not reimburse train fares or provide other financial assistance to those not maintaining “discipline” at the quarantine centres.

“Take the help of loudspeakers or public address systems and publicise at all quarantine centres within 24 hours that train fare reimbursement and other financial assistance announced earlier by the government, will be given only to those migrants who complete their 14-day quarantine in a disciplined manner,” Mr. Amrit said in a letter to all district magistrates.

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Printable version | May 26, 2020 9:26:14 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/videos-of-migrants-enjoying-dance-liquor-and-cannabis-at-quarantine-centres-in-bihar-go-viral/article31630814.ece

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