Hindustan Times (East UP)

Huge rush at Lko bus stations as migrants head back home

SRTC presses 1300 buses to transport over 71K workers, who reached the state capital after lockdown in Delhi, to various UP districts

- HT Correspond­ent letters@htlive.com

LUCKNOW : Throwing caution to the wind amid the second Covid wave, nearly 1 lakh migrant workers, who left Delhi in a huff after chief minister Arvind Kejriwal announced a six-day lockdown in the national capital on Monday, reached Uttar Pradesh on Tuesday.

Of them, more than 71,000 migrants reached Alambagh and Charbagh bus stations in the early hours of Tuesday. Alambagh bus station officials fell short of buses saying they did not expect that migrants in such large numbers would reach the state capital.

“Crowd began pouring in from 3am and continued for another 12 hours. We had to press a fleet of around 1300

in service to ferry these passengers to various east UP districts, including Bahraich, Gonda, Basti, Gorakhpur, Kushinagar and others,” said Pallav Ghosh, regional manager, Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporatio­n (UPSRTC), Lucknow region.

In the last 24 hours, 700 buses left Alambagh bus terminal, 300 left Charbagh and as many Qaiserbagh bus stations carrying these migrant workers to their respective native places. Those who witnessed the huge rush at these stations claimed that Covid protocols went haybuses

wire since no Covid protocols were followed.

“It reminded me of the scene during the last lockdown when migrants were returning home. There was no one to keep a check on them. No social distancing was followed and a majority of passengers were not even wearing marks,” a bus passenger said.

Moreover, facing shortage of buses, officials of UPSRTC, Lucknow region, said they got them arranged from different regions to meet the sudden increase in demand.

Pallav Ghosh, regional manager, UPSRTC, Lucknow region, said they arranged around 45 buses from Barabanki and those on contractua­l basis. He also said he had asked for another 500 more buses from other regions to cater to the demand as the rush of passengers at the bus stations of Lucknow was still there.

Meanwhile, UPSRTC officials said the traffic was mainly from the three bus stations—Sarai Male Khan bus station, Kaushambi interstate bus terminal and Anand Vihar bus terminal. As per the data available with the UPSRTC authoritie­s in Ghaziabad, around 1,187 buses left for UP from these three bus stations.

“974 buses left Kaushambi bus station, 181 Anand Vihar bus station and 32 buses left Kashmiri Gate bus station, making a total of 1187,” said RK Singh, regional manager, Ghaziabad.

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