More shelter homes, which will follow social distancing norms, to be set up

The CIDCO Exhibition Centre in Vashi has been opened up to migrants who have been rendered jobless and homeless due to the current COVID-19 crisis, on the orders of Konkan Divisional Commissioner Shivaji Daund. Many of these labourers have been trying to reach their hometown either on foot or in container trucks meant for transportation of essential goods.

Navi Mumbai’s Municipal Commissioner plans to have 14 such shelter homes across the city from Belapur to Digha ward. The collector and him will identify other places in the city which can be converted into shelters, which will follow social distancing norms. The Panvel City Municipal Corporation too has planned to approach private schools to identify makeshift shelter homes.

The exhibition centre is currently housing 63 people from Uttar Pradesh, 66 from Karnataka and 11 from Maharashtra, making a total of 140. Of these, 37 are women.

These 140 include people who were caught by the Vashi and Panvel City police in the wee hours of Sunday, trying to leave the city.

In the first incident, 77 passengers were caught at Vashi toll naka travelling in a truck meant for essential goods around 12.30 a.m. Meanwhile, around 1.30am, 16 people were found travelling in another container tempo near Palaspa.

The labourers were taken to the exhibition centre while two drivers in the tempo were booked. “States are not accepting their own people and borders have been blocked. To avoid this, the migrant workers will be taken to shelter homes and provided food,” Navi Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjay Kumar said.

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