The second migrant special train from Delhi will leave for Bihar's Muzaffarpur on Friday, officials said, hours after the first Shramik Special from the New Delhi Railway Station left for Madhya Pradesh with over 1,000 workers. The train to Muzaffarpur is expected to leave Friday evening, with 1,200 passengers who were stranded in the national capital due to the COVID-19 lockdown, officials said.
The Delhi government is also in talks with Uttar Pradesh to run special trains for migrant workers from the state who wish to return, they added. The special train for Madhya Pradesh left at 8 pm on Thursday. "First train carrying 1050 migrants from Delhi left for Chattarpur, MP, today at 8 pm. A series of such trains would be carrying migrants to different parts of India in the coming days," Delhi Transport Minister Kailash Gahlot tweeted, with a video of the train leaving the station.
The officials quoted above said that migrant workers who left for Madhya Pradesh were screened by authorities. Around 10,000 migrant workers are staying in government-run shelters in the national capital. Recently, the government had appointed Principal Secretary (Social Welfare) P K Gupta as the nodal officer to facilitate the movement of migrant workers to their native states.
"Migrant workers who wish to go to their native states will be sent. We are also in talks with governments of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh," an official said earlier in the day. After a nationwide lockdown was announced in March to combat the coronavirus outbreak, thousands of migrated workers started leaving for their native places on foot. However, they were stopped by authorities and shifted to makeshift shelters across the city. So far, the Railways has operated 189 Shramik Special trains.