Centre issues SOP for movement of stranded migrant workers in wake of COVID-19 pandemic
Migrant workers gathered near Bandra railway station demanding transportation to return to their native places immediately, in view of the extended lockdown to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, in Mumbai on April 14, 2020. IANS

Centre issues SOP for movement of stranded migrant workers in wake of COVID-19 pandemic

No movement of labour to be permitted outside State/UT where they are currently located

New Delhi, April 19, 2020

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) today issued a Standard Operating Protocol (SOP) for the movement of stranded labourers if they wish to return to their places of work within the State or Union Territory where they are currently located.

Due to the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, workers employed in industry, agriculture, construction and other sectors have moved from their places of work, and are housed in relief/ shelter camps being run by State/ UT Governments.

An official press release said that, since additional new activities, outside the containment zones, have been permitted in the consolidated revised guidelines with effect from April 20, these workers could be engaged in industrial, manufacturing, construction, farming and MNREGA works.

In continuation of Ministry of Home Affairs’s earlier orders dated 29th March, 2020, 15th April, 2020 and 16th April 2020, an SOP for movement of stranded labour within the State/UTs has been issued to Ministries and Departments of the Government of India, and State and UT Governments, with directions for its strict implementation, the release said.

In order to facilitate their movement within the State/UT, the Centre has issued the following guidelines:

--The migrant labourers currently residing in relief/ shelter camps in States/UTs should be registered with the concerned local authority and their skill mapping be carried out to find out their suitability for various kinds of works.

--In the event that a group of migrants wish to return to their places of work, within the State where they are presently located, they would be screened and those who are asymptomatic would be transported to their respective places of work.

--It may be noted that there shall be no movement of labour outside the State/UT where they are currently located.

--During the journey by bus, it would be ensured that safe social distancing norms are followed and the buses used for transport are sanitized as per the guidelines of the Health authorities.

--The National Directives for COVID-19 Management issued under the consolidated revised guidelines dated 15th April 2020 shall be strictly followed.

--The local authorities shall also provide for food and water etc., for the duration of their journey.


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