Delhi to screen people for COVID before letting them go

Delhi govt to screen people for COVID-19 before they return to their native places

Representative image/PTI

The Delhi government has sought details from states about numbers of their migrant workers stranded in the national capital due to the coronavirus lockdown and said it will make arrangements for their screening before they leave for their native places.

According to an official, the government will set up medical camps where migrant workers and other people who are stranded here will have to undergo the screening process.

The Delhi government and police are working on preparing a standard operating procedure (SOP) on the movement of migrant labourers and other stranded people during the lockdown in pursuance of the Union Home Ministry guidelines on the matter, he said.

"We are in talks with states and sought number of migrant workers and stranded people in Delhi. We will then make arrangements for medical camps for the screening of these people accordingly," he said.

The government has also appointed nodal officers to address issues related to migrant workers.

The MHA, in an order issued on Wednesday, allowed migrant workers, tourists, students and other people, who are stranded in different parts of the country, to move to their respective destinations with certain conditions.

The order stated that buses shall be used for transport of such groups of stranded people and these vehicles will be sanitised and will have to follow safe social distancing norms in seating.

Delhi Police's Public Relation Officer Mandeep Singh Randhawa said the government and Delhi Police are finalising modalities and working on the SOP.

"Till the time the SOP is finalised, we request stranded people not to pay attention towards any social media post. The Delhi Police is regulating social media and will take strict actions against those who spread rumours," he said.

On March 28, thousands of migrant workers thronged Anand Vihar bus terminus on the Delhi-UP border to go back to their villages. 

Similarly on April 14, the last day of the first phase of the lockdown, hundreds of migrants had assembled on the west side of Bandra suburban station in Mumbai demanding trains to take them to their native places, hours after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced an extension of the lockdown till May 3.