Prisoners in City We Built: Migrant Workers Slam Karnataka’s Move

“We just want to go home,” read the placards, held up by migrant workers wearing masks.

Published07 May 2020, 09:23 AM IST
India
1 min read

With the Karnataka government deciding to cancel all trains that were to ferry migrants workers to their hometowns, a group of these workers have come up with placards to protest against the move.

"We have been imprisoned in the very city that we built. We just want to go home," the placards, held up by the workers wearing masks read, with the name of the states they belong to written below.

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The decision to cancel all trains amid the nationwide lockdown came hours after Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa met leading property developers of the state.

A senior government official said that even though no reason was given for withdrawing the train services, the decision was taken following a meeting with the representatives of Confederation of Real Estate Developers Associations of India (CREDAI).

The official said in the meeting that it was decided migrant workers were needed to revive the state’s economy.

The move has created a furore, with the Opposition Congress leader and former CM Siddaramaiah calling the decision "not just inhuman but also violation of fundamental rights."

"The decision to go back or to stay back should be with the labourers & not with the government. Labourers are free to choose health or work. Who will take responsibility if something goes wrong? Are we still practicing bonded labour?" Siddaramaiah said in a tweet.

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