Tamil Nadu Minister for Public Works, Highways and Minor Ports, E.V. Velu, and Nilgiris MP, A. Raja, served food to migrant workers employed in the construction of the Udhagamandalam Medical College and Hospital, at an event on Monday evening.
Speaking at the event organised to inquire into the welfare of migrant workers in the district, Mr. Velu said that around 950 migrant workers from Jharkhand, Bihar, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh and Odisha, along with workers from Tamil Nadu were employed as construction workers tasked with building the medical college and hospital at a cost of ₹461.18 crore.
Mr. Velu also said that more than 11,050 workers from outside Tamil Nadu were employed as migrant workers across the Nilgiris. “Based on the instructions of Chief Minister, M.K. Stalin, food, including eggs as well as sweaters and blankets are being provided to workers. Healthcare, including regular medical check-ups are conducted every three months, while sanitation is also assured in their living quarters,” said Mr. Velu, adding that the Chief Minister had also issued a statement that migrant workers had nothing to worry about and that their safety and security was assured.
The Minister also said that the government had ensured that all workers had received the COVID-19 vaccine during the pandemic. Alongside the more than 11,000 migrant workers, a total of 1,250 children of migrant workers below the age of six were utilising anganwadi centers across the Nilgiris, he added.
“It is only because the workers feel safe here that they continue to work here, and send their children to school and anganwadi centers. Workers in the Nilgiris should not fall victim to any rumors that their safety is in jeopardy, and should continue to live in harmony,” said Mr. Velu.
Along with Nilgiris MP, A. Raja, district collector, S.P. Amrith and district superintendent of police, S. Prabhakaran, the Minister inspected and inquired about migrant workers’ living quarters, access to food and healthcare.
On Tuesday, Mr. Velu and Nilgiris MP, A. Raja flagged off battery vehicles and a van for use in the government medical college and hospital.