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West Bengal cleared 10 trains for migrant workers, says Railways

Police officers make announcements as a train carrying migrant workers, who were stranded in Rajasthan due to a lockdown imposed by the government to prevent the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), to their home state of West Bengal, arrives at a railway station on the outskirts of Kolkata, India, May 5, 2020.

Police officers make announcements as a train carrying migrant workers, who were stranded in Rajasthan due to a lockdown imposed by the government to prevent the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), to their home state of West Bengal, arrives at a railway station on the outskirts of Kolkata, India, May 5, 2020.

The Railways, which has so far run more than 300 Shramik specials, on Saturday said the West Bengal government had given approval to run 10 such trains to ferry migrants.

In a tweet on Friday evening, the Railways said it had run over 300 specials for States such as Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Odisha and Madhya Pradesh. However, for West Bengal, it had received approval only for two — one from Ajmer Sharif (in Rajasthan) and the other from Ernakulam (in Kerala).

It said after the request by Home Minister Amit Shah, West Bengal had approved two trains each from Punjab and Tamil Nadu, three from Karnataka and one from Telangana “which are being arranged”.

Mr. Shah had earlier in the day sent a letter to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee stating that the State government was not allowing the trains and it was “injustice” to the stranded workers.

Also read: Bengal arranging special trains to bring back 30,000 stranded people: Official

The Railway Ministry said West Bengal “has not approved any train from Maharashtra, while there is a requirement of 16 trains to West Bengal and presently six requests are pending for which approval is still awaited from West Bengal”. A Railways spokesperson said it has so far run about 302 such trains, ferrying about 3.4 lakh passengers.


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Printable version | Sep 21, 2022 2:59:10 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/west-bengal-cleared-10-trains-for-migrant-workers-says-railways/article31546571.ece