Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Bengaluru: Migrant workers returning in style

Bengaluru: A group of 60 migrant workers landed at the the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) a few days ago on a flight from Patna, strengthening a developing trend of workers ‘flying down’ to resume jobs they had lost during the lockdown or find new ones. All 60 were first-time flyers and their Seva Sindhu registration showed they had left Bengaluru on a Shramik train during the lockdown.

The trend is said to be orchestrated by construction agents at the behest of builders, who are desperate to complete over 500 building projects in city.

Sources at KIA said in the last two weeks, migrant workers have been arriving in batches on domestic flights from Patna, Delhi and Lucknow. “They are all first-time flyers who left on Shramik trains which were run free of cost by the government,” said a BMTC official on special duty at KIA.

Over 2,000 workers have flown back in the last few weeks alone, all going into home isolation after furnishing local addresses to airport authorities. “In most cases, the addresses are under-construction buildings in Sarjapur, Whitefield and other parts of Bengaluru,” said another government staffer on health duty at KIA.

Sources say some builders who have collected payments from customers are desperate to finish projects which have been stalled since March.
22/07/20 Petlee Peter/Times of India
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