The home ministry on Friday allowed the movement of migrant workers as well as stranded students, pilgrims, tourists and others, by special trains, with due adherence to social distancing norms at railway stations, platforms and inside the trains.
This comes after several states appealed to the Centre to allow all persons including migrant workers stranded at different places due to the lockdown, to be transported to their home states by trains rather than by road/buses as allowed earlier, given the higher carrying capacity of the former and lesser time taken for the journey.
The movement of trains to shift stranded persons to their home states has already begun in some parts of the country.
The order issued by the home ministry on Friday adding trains as a permitted mode of inter-state travel for migrant labourers, students and other stranded persons, adds a sub-clause to Clause 17 of the guidelines, dealing with movement of persons. It states that “movement of migrant workers, pilgrims, tourists, students and other persons, stranded at different places, is also allowed by special trains to be operated by the ministry of railways”.