Mumbai News

Bombay HC seeks report on procedures migrants need to follow to leave Maharashtra – The Hindu

The Bombay High Court has directed the Maharashtra government to file a report, by June 2, listing the entire procedure that a migrant worker is required to follow to be eligible to leave the State.

A Division Bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice K.K. Tated was hearing a bunch of public interest litigations (PIL) filed by Centre of Indian Trade Unions and others.

The PIL raises concerns about the migrant workers who have submitted applications to leave the State by Shramik Special trains and buses during the continuance of the lockdown.

It says they have been left in the dark on the status of their applications and that till such time they can board the trains/buses to leave for their native places, they have to live in cramped and unhygienic shelters, without being provided food and other essentials.

Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, appearing for the Union of India, informed the court that the Supreme Court is seized of the issue of migrant workers and a detailed order was passed on May 28 on their plight.

The Bench said, “At this stage, neither are we empowered nor do we wish to make any order contrary to the spirit of the order of the Supreme Court. However, having regard to the peculiar local conditions, we consider it fit and proper to call upon the State to file a report indicating therein how the plight of the migrant workers, who have been assembling at the railway stations/bus stands in Mumbai and places around it, are being addressed.”

The court added that, “In fact, we have come across photographs in newspapers showing congregation of migrant workers not only on railway platforms but also on the streets adjoining the railway stations. Such congregation, if allowed, would run counter to the object, for which the lockdown has been imposed.”

The Bench directed the State to file a report by June 2 indicating the whole procedure that a migrant worker is required to follow to be eligible to leave, the likely time within which he could board a train/bus, the nature of shelter he is provided with during the waiting period as well as provisions made for sustenance.