The railways on Tuesday said the consent of the destination states is not required to operate Shramik Special trains, hours after the Home Ministry issued a standard operating procedure for the national transporter to run these trains to ferry migrants to their native places.
"Consent of terminating state not necessary to run Shramik Special trains," railway spokesperson Rajesh Bajpai said.
"After the new SoP, the implication is that no consent of receiving state is mandatory," he said.
Earlier, a political storm had broken out when Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said that West Bengal, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh were being laggard in approving these trains.
Since May 1, the railways has run 1,565 migrant trains and ferried over 20 lakh migrants.
Operated 1,565 'Shramik Special' trains, ferried over 2 million migrants: Railways
While Uttar Pradesh has allowed 837 trains, Bihar has permitted 428 and Madhya Pradesh more than 100, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said in a tweet.
PM @NarendraModi जी के नेतृत्व में रेलवे द्वारा 20 लाख से अधिक कामगारों को 1,565 श्रमिक स्पेशल ट्रेनों का संचालन कर उनके घर भेजा जा चुका है।— Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) May 19, 2020
अकेले उत्तर प्रदेश 837, बिहार 428 और मध्यप्रदेश 100 से अधिक ट्रेनों की अनुमति दे चुके है। pic.twitter.com/REUCr0KYEB
As of Monday night, 162 trains were in transit and 1,252 had reached their destinations. Around 116 more are currently in the pipeline, it said.
"Under the leadership of PM @NarendraModi, more than 20 lakh workers have been sent to their homes by the Railways on 1,565 Shramik Special trains," the minister said.
According to data till Monday night, more than 496 trains have originated from Gujarat and 17 more are in the pipeline, while over 266 trains have already started from Maharashtra, with 37 more in the pipeline.