The Delhi government has ordered officials to ensure that migrant workers do not walk on roads and railway tracks as Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called for urgent steps to mitigate the hardships faced by them during the lockdown.
If migrant workers are found walking on roads or railway tracks, they should to be taken to the nearest shelter facilities and provided food and water till the time their travel home in special trains and buses is arranged, an order said.
The death toll due to coronavirus in Delhi has mounted to 129, even as the total number of COVID-19 cases reported in the national capital climbed to 9,333 on Saturday, a health bulletin said.
Fifteen inmates and one head warden of Rohini jail have tested positive. They were sharing the barrack with a 28-year-old inmate who had earlier tested positive.
In a fresh wave of exodus, thousands of migrant labourers from Delhi-NCR have been walking back to their residences in different states, mostly Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.
On migrant labourers, the order issued by Chief Secretary Vijay Dev also asked its officials to coordinate with the railways to speed up their movement to their homes.
Dev asked nodal officer P K Gupta and other senior officers on Friday to ensure "migrant workers do not resort to walking on road and on railway tracks".
He also asked them to take the migrants found walking on roads or railway tracks to shelter facilities, provide food and water till the time they are sent home in special trains and buses.
"There should be proper cooperation with the railways in running more number of Shramik Special trains so that travel of stranded migrant workers is facilitated at a faster rate," he said in an order issued on Friday.
All Shramik trains should be received without any hindrance, the order added.
Since last week, there have been instances of migrant workers heading back home meeting with fatal accidents.
At least 24 migrant labourers lost their lives and 36 people suffered injuries when a trailer-truck carrying them collided with another truck early Saturday in Auraiya in Uttar Pradesh.
Chief Minister Kejriwal called for urgent steps to mitigate the hardships faced by migrants during the lockdown, saying he was deeply disturbed by the deaths of labourers in an accident in Auraiya district.
His deputy Manish Sisodia said courage should be shown in reopening the cities that were turning into "graves" of hardworking labourers.
"Extremely disturbed by the loss of lives in the accident in Auraiya. The tragedy of migrant labour keeps getting worse. Something needs to be done urgently," Kejriwal said in a tweet.
On Friday, three migrants were killed and 71 injured in two separate road accidents in Uttar Pradesh. A day before, eight migrant workers were killed in Madhya Pradesh and six in Uttar Pradesh.
On May 8, 16 migrant workers were run over by a goods train in Maharashtra.
In a separate action, the Delhi Police has registered nine cases against landlords for allegedly forcing students to pay rent during the coronavirus-triggered lockdown.
All the nine FIRs were registered at north Delhi's Mukherjee Nagar police station, they said.