Maha in talks with CMs on return of migrant workers: Deshmukh

Nashik, Apr 29 (PTI) The Maharashtra government is in talks with chief ministers of other states over facilitating return of migrant workers to their native places in a planned manner, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said on Wednesday.

Thousands of workers from other states are stranded in Maharashtra, especially in Mumbai, due to the coronavirus- enforced lockdown and they have been demanding that transport arrangements be made for them to go back to their hometowns.

Deshmukh said Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray will announce a decision on sending back migrant workers after the discussion with his counterparts from other states.

Deshmukh did not name the other states, but workers hailing from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal, among others, form a sizeable chunk of migrant labourers living in Maharashtra.

Migrant workers are living in Maharashtra in big numbers, particularly in Mumbai. Discussions are on with the chief ministers of other states on how the migrant workers can be sent back to their respective native states by buses or trains in a planned manner.

The chief minister (Thackeray) will announce the decision in this connection after detailed discussion, Deshmukh told reporters here.

The NCP minister reiterated that the state government will not tolerate attacks on policemen, doctors and nurses who are working at the forefront of the battle against COVID-19.

'Strictest action will be taken against those attacking police, doctors and nurses who are working round the clock,' he warned.

Earlier, Deshmukh held parleys with Food and Civil Supplies Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, Public Health Minister Rajesh Tope and Agriculture Minister Dada Bhuse on containing the spread of COVID-19 in Malegaon town, which has emerged as a hotspot of the disease in Nashik district.

Deshmukh said the government will deploy adequate number of policemen and doctors to contain the spread of the disease in Malegaon. PTI ENM RSY RSY