The Maharashtra government on Thursday set up a control room to send back migrant workers and tourists from other states stranded owing to the nationwide lockdown. This control room will also facilitate the return of Maharashtra’s natives returning to their homes from other states.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has asked all district collectors to function as nodal officers for this purpose. The control room will monitor their functioning and coordinate with them. The nodal officers will prepare lists of people stranded in their respective districts and exchange these lists with the nodal officers of other districts. In the case of residents of other states stranded in Maharashtra, a state-to-state level dialogue will be established to arrange for their return.
Three senior IAS officials, Nitin Kareer, Additional Chief Secretary (Revenue), Principal Secretary (Women and Child Development) IZ Kundan and Abhay Yavalkar, Director of Disaster Management Cell will monitor the control room.
However, the Maharashtra government has laid down several guidelines in this regard. It has made clear that no group of people will be allowed to travel without a letter from the collector or director of the Disaster Management Cell. Similarly, people with flu-like symptoms will not be allowed to travel at all.
The government has asked all the collectors to conduct medical tests of everyone who will arrive in Maharashtra from other states. “They should be quarantined for 14 days. It could be home quarantine or institutional quarantine. Every such person should be asked to install Aaroyga Setu App in their mobile phones,” a note by the Maharashtra government read.
Meanwhile, the state government arranged for 76 buses from Dhule to bring back 1,600 students from Maharashtra stranded in Rajasthan’s Kota. These students were in Kota to prepare for the entrance examination of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT).