'Branding migrants as COVID-19 spreaders inappropriate'

Coronavirus: Branding migrant workers as COVID-19 spreaders is inappropriate, West Bengal Govenor tells CM Mamata Banerjee

West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar

West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Friday took a swipe at Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee accusing her of labelling returning migrant workers as “COVID-19 spreaders”.

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The Governor in a series of tweets said that the returning migrant workers belong to the state, adding that they should be treated as assets and not a liability. He also said that they were forced to leave the state in search of livelihood.

“Migrant labour returning to State are our own. In search of livelihood, they were forced to leave State. Branding them as Covid spreaders is inappropriate-too disappointing, too disheartening. They are our assets and not liability @MamataOfficial,” tweeted Dhankhar.

He also urged the chief minister to observe all the protocols related to COVID-19 but be humane in dealing with the issue of migrant workers.

“Observe all the protocols that COVID-19 advisories warrant, but be humane @MamataOfficial. We must appreciate the desire of our daughters and sons to return in times of distress to be with their dear ones,” tweeted Dhankhar.

Dhankhar said that the migrant workers deserve to be greeted with warmth upon their return and to be with their families during the ongoing pandemic crisis.

“They deserve warmth upon return to their homes and be with their families in this unprecedented pandemic crisis,” tweeted Dhankhar.

His comments come as a day after the CM Mamata Banerjee said that she was concerned with the Railways sending 36 Shramik Special trains to Bengal from Maharashtra within a short span of time without prior intimation the state government.

She asked would the Centre take responsibility if this causes a major spike in COVID-19 cases in Bengal. Banerjee said that many among those who are coming from other states are infected and how will it be possible for the state administration to screen such a large number of people. She sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention in this regard.

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