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'Sufferings Of Migrant Labourers Not Coming To A Halt' : NHRC Takes Cognizance Of Mother Pulling Suitcase With Exhausted Kid Sleeping On

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
18 May 2020 7:01 AM GMT
Sufferings Of Migrant Labourers Not Coming To A Halt : NHRC Takes Cognizance Of Mother Pulling Suitcase With Exhausted Kid Sleeping On
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The National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, India has taken suo motu cognizance of media reports about a mother pulling a suitcase with her small child sleeping half hung on it on Agra Highway. Reportedly, the migrant woman was walking all the way from somewhere in Punjab to Jhansi in Uttar Pradesh till she caught the attention of the media persons. The Commission has observed that it is...

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The National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, India has taken suo motu cognizance of media reports about a mother pulling a suitcase with her small child sleeping half hung on it on Agra Highway. Reportedly, the migrant woman was walking all the way from somewhere in Punjab to Jhansi in Uttar Pradesh till she caught the attention of the media persons.

The Commission has observed that it is aware of the unprecedented situation and that the Central and the State governments are working sincerely to address every issue coming up during the lockdown but it is strange that the pain of the child and the family could be seen and felt by many enroute, except the local authorities.

"Had the local authorities been vigilant, some relief could immediately be provided to the aggrieved family and others facing the similar hardships. The incident amounts to violation of human rights and requires intervention by the NHRC", said the human rights panel headed by former Chief Justice of India, H L Dattu.

"Media reports suggest continuing sufferings of the people, particularly the migrant labourers, whose journey long, is not coming to a halt", it added.

Accordingly, it has issued notices to the Chief Secretaries of Punjab and Uttar Pradesh and the District Magistrate, Agra, Uttar Pradesh calling for a detailed report within four weeks in the matter including the action taken against the responsible officers/ officials and relief/ assistance provided to the victim families.

The Commission has further observed that several news reports about miseries of people have come to its notice during the lockdown forcing it to intervene in order to sensitize the Central and the State authorities to deal with the situation with an approach of respect to human rights of the public at large, particularly the vulnerable sections of the society.

Referring to yet another reported incident of apathy of public authorities and its suo motu cognizance of the matter wherein a female migrant labourer delivered her baby on road and continued her journey within two hours after that on way to Madhya Pradesh from Maharashtra, the Commission observed that such incidents only indicate towards "carelessness and inappropriate approach" of the local public authorities who do not bother to come forward to see the reality at the ground.


On Friday, the Madras HC suo moto sought an action taken report from the State Government and the Centre on the steps taken for the relief of migrants.

"It is a pity to see the migrant labourers walking for days together to reach their native places and in the process, some of them had lost their lives due to accidents. The Government authorities of all the States should have extended their human services to those migrant labourers", observed the HC bench comprising Justices N Kirubakaran and R Hemalatha.

The Andhra Pradesh High Court also issued a slew of directions for the welfare of walking migrants, observing that it will be failing in its role if it does not react.

Recently, the Karnataka HC had directed the Centre and the State Government to take steps to ensure that no migrant is deprived of an opportunity to travel back to native place on account of incapacity to pay rail fare.

The Gujarat HC on Monday had taken suo moto notice of the migrants issue, observing that many are going hungry and are suffering the worst on account of lockdown.

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