Two trains will depart from here on Monday to take workers and people stranded in Karnataka due to the COVID-19 lockdown, while Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said free bus services for labourers stuck within the state to reach their native places will be extended for two days.
The trains will depart on Monday to Jaipur in Rajasthan and Patna in Bihar, the government said in a statement, adding food and water arrangements have been made for passengers before the travel.
Also sharing details about the labourers and people traveling to other states, the statement said, on Sunday two trains left for Patna in Bihar, and one each to Ranchi in Jharkhand and Bhubaneswar in Odisha. Four trains carrying 4,800 people have left for their destination on Sunday, it said.
Trains have been operated from Kerala and Telangana in the past few days to various destinations for the benefit of guest workers stranded there. In a bid to help people, including large number of labourers from Karnataka stranded within the state due to the lockdown, the Chief Minister said free bus services will be extended for two days.
The Chief Minister had on Sunday said, free bus services will be available for three days till Tuesday, and the expenses will be borne by the government. “The free bus service announced for migrant workers is going on smoothly and it has been extended for two more days,” he said in a statement today.
The free bus facility was supposed to end on Tuesday, but for the benefit of labourers and people it has been extended till Thursday, he said. Labourers and people should not congregate at bus stands and should peacefully travel to their native places, he added.
An estimated 30,000 people travelled to their native places on Sunday as 951 Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses were were pressed into service. On Monday already 1,500 people have begun their journey in 50 buses, the statement said adding in Bengaluru 550 and in other cities of the state 400 buses have be/en reserved for this purpose.
On Saturday, an estimated 16,500 passengers have travelled to their native in 550 buses, it said. Allowing one-time inter-state and inter district movement of those stranded, the government had earlier said, those wanting to travel will have to bear the travel expenses, and buses will be made available if required.
However, following the criticism that bus fare was too high and with thousands of labourers expressing their inability to pay, Yediyurappa on Saturday had decided to charge single fare tariff for workers travelling by KSRTC buses within the state, and in further relief he issued orders on Sunday making it free travel.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines