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इंडियन आवाज़     29 May 2020 05:44:18      انڈین آواز

Rahul Gandhi Hits the Streets, Interacts with Stranded Migrants

Staff Reporter / New Delhi

In a major political adventure, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi today took to the streets to meet migrant workers camped out near the Delhi Sukhdev Vihar flyover.

In photos circulated on social media, Mr Gandhi can be seen wearing a face mask and sitting on the pavement as he talks to a small group of migrant workers, some of whom were walking back to Uttar Pradesh and others to Madhya Pradesh. They had already walked 130 km from Ambala in Haryana.

“Rahulji came to speak with us. He wanted to know the difficulties we are facing. We told him we’re dying of starvation here… there is no work anywhere. It has been 50 days like this,” said one of the migrants.

He also said that it had been at least four days since the group he was travelling with – which consists of 12 adults and one child – had left their homes.

“How much can we earn in four days, in five days? Whatever money we have is spent on food,” he said, adding that he was thankful that Mr Gandhi had stopped to listen to their troubles.

“At least someone is listening to us. He said he would try to help,” said a worker coming from Ambala .

Earlier Gandhi urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to “reconsider” the government’s Rs 20 lakh crore coronavirus package in favour of direct cash transfers to stranded labourers and poor farmers. Failure to do so – to immediately provide the poorest sections of the society – with money in their bank accounts could lead to a “catastrophic problem”, Mr Gandhi said.

Sources said Mr Gandhi was also trying to understand why so many thousands were still trying to walk hundreds of kilometres home despite the centre having arranged “shramik (worker)” trains.

Migrants detained after meet with Rahul Gandhi, claims Congress

The Congress on Saturday claimed that some migrant labourers were taken in preventive custody soon after their interaction with former party president Rahul Gandhi.

The Congress alleged that the police had told them they had orders to do so. The Delhi police, however, refuted the claim. “We have not detained any migrant. Rahul Gandhi came and interacted with migrants. Later, his supporters took the migrants in their vehicles,” DCP South East RP Meena said.

Gandhi interacted with the migrant workers near the flyover in Delhi’s Sukhdev Vihar hours after he spoke with journalists from the regional press. Party leaders said that Gandhi arranged for them to be sent home.

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