Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister
Nitin Patel said on Thursday that he arranged vehicles for around 700 migrant labourers who had left the city for Rajasthan on foot amid lockdown on account of coronavirus.
Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, on the other hand, urged migrant workers not to leave and assured that arrangement will be made to provide them food and accomodation.
Hundreds of labourers from the neighbouring state were seen walking home in the last two days as the lockdown kicked in and they had no work.
The Rajasthan border is around 225 km from here.
"Deputy chief minister yesterday night on highway came across a group of 700 migrant workers who were walking back to their native villages in Rajasthan from Ahmedabad," said Patel's Twitter handle.
"He called upon officials and minister of state for home Pradeepsinh Jadeja to the spot on highway, made arrangements for their food and also arranged vehicles so that they can be transported upto Rajasthan border," it added.
Migrant workers have no option but to return to their home states as they can not even find food here with hotels closed. Most of them are daily wage workers and cannot afford to pay house rent too, when there is no work.
"We have decided to walk all the way to our villages because if we stay here we will die of hunger," said one labourer.
"No hotels or shops are open. At few outlets which sell food, one roti costs Rs 50. We can not afford it," he said.
Chief Minister Vijay Rupani urged migrant workers not to leave amid the threat of the spread of coronavirus.
"It is not advisable to travel in groups in these difficult times. Migrant workers should stay where they are. The state government with the help of voluntary organisations will look after their food requirements," he said in a statement.
He also requested employers to make arrangement to provide accommodation to such workers and promised help from the government too.
In some parts of the state, police is distributing food packets to migrant workers who are walking back to their native places.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)