Telangana HC tells govt to provide food, shelter to migrant labourers

It is the duty of the government to protect migrant workers and ensure they are placed in their respective trains moving to their destination, says HC panel

By Author  |  Legal Correspondent  |  Published: 23rd May 2020  12:05 am
Telangana HC

Hyderabad: A two-judge panel of the Telangana High Court, comprising Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan and Justice B Vijayasen Reddy, on Friday directed the State government to provide food, shelter and medical help to the migrant workers.

“It is the duty of the government to protect migrant workers and ensure they are placed in their respective trains moving to their destination,” it said. Vasudha Nagaraj, a practising advocate, moved a lunch motion before the court complaining about the inaction of authorities in taking care of migrant workers.

She complained that migrant workers were being left at the State border to their fate. She brought to the notice of the court that hundreds of migrant workers were spotted on the city outskirts walking towards their destinations in the hot weather.

The panel directed the authorities to provide shelter to all the migrant labourers in surrounding function halls. The panel will continue to hear the matter on May 29 and directed the government to list the steps taken by it and submit a report.

Covid fund for disabled

The panel directed the State government to create a separate Covid fund for the disabled people in the State. It made it clear that the fund was to deal with the special needs of the people who are disabled. The panel further clarified that the pension given to disabled cannot be included in this fund.

The court came down heavily on the government for its inaction in dealing with about 10 lakh disabled people in the State. The panel was dealing with a PIL filed by Ganesh Karnati. The petitioner questioned the inaction of the state in implementing the Comprehensive Disability Inclusive Guidelines issued by the Central government during the pandemic.

According to the report filed by the government, there are about 10 lakh disabled people in the State. Advocate General BS Prasad informed the court that the State government was implementing Aasra pension to help the disabled people. The panel observed that the pension scheme was intended to serve the needs in general circumstances and it stated, in the special circumstances of Covid-19, the State government is required to create a special fund to take care of their medical and other needs. The case was adjourned by two weeks.

Fruit-growing farmers

The same panel directed the Central and State governments to take all steps to ensure the fruit growing farmers do not suffer any losses. It directed the State government to make arrangements for procuring fruits at agriculture markets and transporting the same.

The panel also suggested both governments to explore the option of transporting fruits through trains. Dr K Narayana Reddy, a retired veterinary doctor, had filed the public interest litigation case. He had challenged the inaction of the authorities in taking measures in favour of the fruit farmers for proper marketing, management, sale, distribution and transportation of various seasonal fruits.

The panel directed the authorities to file a detailed report on the arrangements made for sale, distribution and transportation by June 4. It will continue to hear the matter on June 5.


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