NEW DELHI :
Former Finance Minister and senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram on Wednesday welcomed the government's decision to allow inter-state movement of migrant workers and students after testing and demanded sanitized trains point-to-point to move large number of workers.
Chidambaram in a series of tweets said, "I welcome the decision of the government to allow inter-state movement of migrant workers and students after testing them by bus. This has been a demand of the Congress since mid-April."
"Buses alone will not be sufficient. It is better to run sanitized trains point-to-point to move the large numbers who desire to migrate back to their home states," he said.
His remarks came after the Central government allowed movement of students, migrant workers, pilgrims, tourists and others stranded at various places due to the ongoing nationwide lockdown that is in place to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
Earlier in the day, Union Ministry of Home Affairs issued a circular to the states and Union Territories allowing these persons to move under a set of guidelines.
This marks a major development in the opening of the lockdown as hundreds of thousands of workers are stranded at shelter homes in far-off places, away from their homes. All the states and UTs should designate nodal authorities and develop standard protocols for receiving and sending such stranded persons.
Such persons will be screened and those found asymptomatic will be allowed to proceed. Buses will be used for transporting groups of people. The buses will be sanitised and will follow safe social distancing norms for seating.
The states falling on the transit route will allow the passage of such persons to the receiving state or UT. On arrival at the destination, such persons will be assessed by the state health authorities and put under home quarantine unless the assessment requires keeping them under institutional quarantine.