24 migrants killed, 20 injured in accident in Uttar Pradesh

Updated: May 17, 2020, 07:32 IST | Agencies | Lucknow

The container in which the labourers were travelling was stationed at a dhaba when the speeding DCM mini-truck hit it; CM Yogi Adityanath announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to families of the deceased

Police officials carry a body of a victim who was killed in UP on Saturday. Pic/PTI
Police officials carry a body of a victim who was killed in UP on Saturday. Pic/PTI

In a major road accident, at least 24 migrant labourers were killed and over 20 others injured when a truck carrying them collided with a DCM mini-truck in Auraiya, around 180 km from Lucknow, here on Saturday morning. Most of the migrants were coming from neighbouring Rajasthan and a majority of them were natives of Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal. Of those 20 who got injured in the mishap, 15 were being shifted to PGI at Saifai in Etawah in critical condition.

According to sources, the incident took place near Mihauli village under Kotwali police circle around 3.30 am. Auraiya District Magistrate Abhishek Singh said that a probe was on to ascertain cause of the accident. He claimed that the district administration was carrying out the rescue and relief work on war footing. The injured were being rushed to nearby hospitals for immediate medical attention, said the DM.

Meanwhile, taking cognisance of the incident, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath directed senior officials to rush to the site of the accident and ensure proper medical help to the injured. The CM also announced a financial assurance of R2 lakh to the families of each of the deceased and R50,000 for those who got injured in the mishap.

Modi condoles death
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday morning condoled the death of the 24 migrant workers and prayed for the speedy recovery of the injured. In a tweet, the Prime Minister said, "I am deeply hurt by the tragic road accident in Uttar Pradesh's Auraiya. Government is taking all relief measures. I express my condolence to the families of the those who died in the accident and also pray for the speedy recovery of the injured."

'Govt can't be a bystander'
The Congress on Saturday targeted the Centre, saying that the government can't be a bystander on the migrant crisis and if needed the Army should be brought in to help migrants reach their homes safely. Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel said, "The migrant crisis is now as big as the pandemic itself. The government cannot be a bystander in such a situation where migrants either go hungry or are losing their lives in accidents."

'Maha govt responsible'
Lashing out at the Uddhav Thackeray government of Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh Labour Minister Swami Prasad Maurya said that Maharashtra is responsible for the migrant crisis. He said the Thackeray government is deliberately sending migrant workers to UP in trucks. This may lead to increased infection in the state, he said. The UP labour minister said that the Congress-ruled states have failed to tackle the migrant crisis as the workers have to face a lot of hardship there. Since the Maharashtra government could not provide food and shelter to migrants, it is now sending them back to UP, Maurya alleged.

"The Maharashtra government is sending migrants in trucks. That is why there is chaos all around. The same mistake was committed by Delhi earlier. Each state should help the migrants at this hour of crisis keeping in mind humanitarian values. The migrants should not be forced to flee. Their needs should have been taken care of there. Sending them in overloaded trucks will not help anyone," Maurya said.

5 workers killed in MP
Five migrant workers died in an accident on Saturday in Madhya Pradesh as the truck they were travelling in overturned on Sagar-Chhatarpur road. Another 18 co-passengers were injured in the incident. According to the police, on Saturday morning the cargo truck was going from Sagar to Chhatarpur. The driver lost control of the vehicle near Semra Bridge and it overturned there. The accident took place under the Bakswaha police station area of Chhatarpur district.
Five labourers died on the spot while 18 labourers have been injured in the accident. These labourers were going from Maharashtra to Uttar Pradesh. The injured have been admitted to the hospital in Banda, the police said.

Migrants stranded on border
Hundreds of migrant workers heading back to Odisha, Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh have been stranded on the Tamil Nadu border as Andhra Pradesh police have sealed the routes to stop them from entering the state on their way to their home states in north India. Fully aware of the dangers of covering a distance of 1,700 km to 2,000 km by walking under the scorching sun and with no food and water, the migrants said they had no choice. "We have no money to buy food or pay house rents. We couldn't have stayed in Chennai and since there are no trains or buses available, walking was the only option," said a worker returning to his home in Odisha.

India surpasses China
With India's total tally rising to 85,940, the world's largest democracy has now surpassed China with a total of 2,752 deaths, the Union health ministry said on Saturday. With the steady rise in cases, India has risen to 11th spot among countries with the highest number of confirmed infection. Goa and Manipur, which were declared COVID-19 free, have reported fresh cases.

Rs 50K
Amount announced by UP govt for those injured in the mishap

Owner converts dhaba into langar

A dhaba owner is providing food and snacks to the returning migrant labourers at no cost. The Aditya Raj Dhaba, situated on the national highway in the Rilliganj police station area on the border of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, is a relaxation point for migrant labourers. Dhaba owner Basant Singh has transformed his dhaba into a langar and is feeding around 500 people every day. Singh said: "I get self-satisfaction by doing this. This is an act of humanity."

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