Video Editor: Purnendu Pritam
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, migrant workers from Bihar are still stranded in the Kashmir. They had come back in the months of January & February, in search of work and are now urging the government to let them go home.
The Quint reached out to these stranded workers after hearing about their plight. Mohammed Asharful, a labourer from Bihar who is now living in a camp, said he has no money left,
"“They told us that they will let us go in 10-20 days but 2 months have passed. We don’t have any money or any work. They keep telling that they will let us go but nothing works.”" - Mohammed Asharful, Migrant Worker from Bihar
When The Quint tried to get in touch with labour camp in the district, our stringer was asked to turn off the camera and was then asked to take permission.
He went ahead and got permission too, but the authorities sent an official. Despite this, our stringer was not allowed to enter the premises and was asked to speak to the labourers at the entrance. He was also asked to wrap up within 5 minutes.
"“We are being threatened. The government is not doing anything for us.”" - Fantu Rishi, migrant worker from Bihar
According to Jammu & Kashmir Labour Department, there are 38,352 labourers who wish to go back after being impacted by the COVID-19 lockdown, of which 13,444 are from Bihar.
"“My aunt passed away but I could not reach home. I have no money and have had to ask for Rs 5,000 from home. Even that is spent.”" - Khagesh Kumar, Araria, Bihar
Muhammad Mustafa, who is a migrant worker from Bihar’s Purnia, says he wants to request Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and PM Modi to help him go back home.
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