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Patna, May 6 () Limiting the facility of special trainsto those stuck away from their native places since justbefore the lockdown would result in injustice to a largenumber of migrant workers from Bihar who might be deprived ofa journey back home despite badly needing it, leader of theopposition Tejashwi Yadav said on Wednesday.

In a video message, the RJD leader said he had flaggedthe issue at a meeting held by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar onthe previous night in which MLAs representing all politicalparties had taken part via video conferencing and discussedthe coronavirus situation.

I said this was injustice (yeh anyaay hai). I urged theChief Minister to take up the matter with the Centre so thatthe Union Home Ministry suitably amends its guidelines issuedon May 03 whereby the scope of the facility has been narroweddown, he said.

He also said that the state government must requisitionas many trains as possible to facilitate the journey ofshramveers (the valiant ones earning livelihood by hardlabor) and added the excuse of paucity of resources shouldnot be resorted to in this hour of crisis.Advertisement


We had received 2.5 lakh guests during the PrakashParva and footed the bill for their prolonged stay.. can wenot do the same for our own people, Yadav asked referring tothe 350th birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Gobind Singhheld in January, 2017 when his party was sharing power and hehimself was serving as the Deputy CM.

As the principal opposition party, the RJD has beenforthcoming with the offer of help. We have said that ourparty is ready to foot the bill for 2000 buses and 50 trains.We stand by the same if it eases the burden of the stategovernment, the 30-year-old said.

The RJD leader also said I have cautioned the ChiefMinister against depending too much on his team of bureaucratsto gauge the situation on the ground.

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“They could hoodwink him. He should, instead, take MLAsinto the loop. Being elected representatives, they have agreater accountability to the people and would gain nothingfrom speaking lies during such a crisis.

Besides putting in place such a system of check andbalance, our Chief Minister should consider personallyvisiting hospitals and centers set up for testing andquarantining to get a first-hand account. Many of hiscounterparts in other states are doing the same. I suggestedthis at yesterdays meeting too.

Yadav also disapproved of the state governments much-touted door-to-door screening drive, inspired from itsimmensely successful Pulse Polio campaign a decade ago, andfavored that the focus be shifted to increasing testing ofsamples.Advertisement


We should have testing centres at every district.Screening is useless since it is evident that most patients inthe country are asymptomatic,” he said.

The government must also ensure adequate protective gearfor its medical personnel and the Chief Minister should walkthe talk on his resolve to raise the number of ventilators inthe state by at least 100, Yadav added.

For most such equipment, the state government islooking at the Centre which apparently is not responding withthe desired sense of urgency. But there are states likeChhattisgarh which are making direct purchases, withoutdepending on the Centre. There is no reason why Bihar cannotdo so, he added. NACSNS SNS



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