Coronavirus Lockdown: 12-year-old dies walking 100 km from Telangana to her Chhatisgarh home

Updated: 21 April, 2020 13:55 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Raipur

The girl, working in a chilli farm in Telangana, was just 11 kms away from her home in Chhatisgarh's Bijapur district when she collapsed and died, CM Bhupesh Baghel announced Rs 1 lakh compensation to her family

In a tragic case of migrant labour crisis, a 12-year-old girl, working at a chilli farm in Telangana, collapsed and died on Saturday while trying to make her way back home in Bijapur district in Chhatisgarh, amid the Coronavirus lockdown. According to the officials, the deceased, Jamalo Madkam, who left home in Bijapur’s Aded village just two months ago, was barely 11 km away from reaching there when she collapsed, Indian Express reported.

Officials also said that Madkam is suspected to have died of electrolyte imbalance as she was walking for three days with 13 others working in Telangana to her village, covering the distance of 100 km. The girl has also tested for Coronavirus that came negative. The results of the test came a day after she died.

Other than Madkam, the group included three children and eight women. Madkam’s father Andoram said that he had heard she left with a group from Peruru village in Telangana on April 16. “They decided to come back after realising that the lockdown had got extended and they would not get any work,” he said.

The girl was the only daughter of Andoram (32) and his wife Sukamati (30), who were barely surviving on forest produce until she went to Telangana for the first time to work on a chilli farm. He said that she had gone to work with some women from the village.

Medical Officer of Bijapur district Dr B R Pujari was quoted by the newspaper as saying that the group had walked through forests and in one place, the girl had a fall. The newspaper quoted sources saying that the girl had died at 8 am on Saturday when the group had reached the border of Bijapur district. They could not inform her family earlier as only among them carried a phone whose battery died.

When the group reached Bhandarpal village, they managed to inform the girl’s family by requesting a resident of the village to help them make a call to her parents. They also informed the police about the girl’s death to the police.

Pujari said that the medical team rushed to the spot as soon as they got the news. “Since Telangana had cases, we immediately sent our teams, but we couldn’t find them,” he said.  Then the team found the group who handed over Madkam’s body to them. The group was then sent to a quarantine facility whereas the girl’s body was sent to a morgue. Andoram and Sukamati collected the girl’s body on Sunday evening.

Chhatisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel announced Rs 1 lakh compensation for the girl’s family on Monday.

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First Published: 21 April, 2020 13:36 IST

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