No Food or Beds: Bihar’s Govt Schools Make Poor Isolation Centres
Migrant workers in Bihar are being quarantined in poorly equipped government schools turned into isolation centres.
Video Editor: Ashutosh Bhardwaj, Abhishek Sharma
The announcement of a 21-day lockdown by PM Modi on 24 March saw an unprecedented exodus of migrant workers from cities across India. With all economic activities having come to a grinding halt, the livelihoods of these daily wage workers have been lost, forcing them to walk hundreds of kilometres back home.
Many of them have been quarantined at isolation centres as a precautionary measure against the coronavirus outbreak, but these often lack basic facilities. The Quint spoke to a few migrant workers in Bihar who have been housed in government schools that have been temporarily converted into isolation centres. They allege they have been left to their own devices, with no access to food or proper sleeping arrangements.
“I have been locked here since 30 March. Nobody comes to check on us. There is no facility for food or even to sleep. There isn’t a single fan here in the room.”Kishan (name changed), Migrant worker, Darbhanga, Bihar
The situation in Bihar's Supaul is also the same. Migrant workers are seen sleeping on desks or on the floor at a government school.
“I returned home from Delhi by my own means. I was picked up from my home. Whatever bedding we have, we’ve brought from our home. We were told screening would be done, but nothing has happened so far.”Devilal Pal, Migrant worker, Supaul, Bihar
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