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Facing uncertainty, forced to walk, 12 migrant workers dead in road mishap

Facing uncertainty, forced to walk, 12 migrant workers dead in road mishap

Palghar/Hyderabad: As countries globally began enforcing strict lockdowns to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus, in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement began a huge displacement.

Hundreds and thousands of migrant workers covered miles to reach home, triggering an uncontrolled reverse migration that not only left many of them stranded in the middle of their journey but also led to deaths.

The total number of confirmed cases on Saturday till 5.45 pm was 918, out of which 819 are positive, 80 have recovered and 19 have died due to the virus. A total of 194 confirmed cases were reported from Friday morning till Saturday evening.

People are left without income, without work. Photographs of migrant workers walking hundreds of kilometres or crammed in trucks and empty railway crates depict a pathetic picture.

Meanwhile, four migrant workers from Rajasthan were crushed to death and three seriously injured when a tempo ran over them as they were walking along a highway in Maharashtra's Palghar district on Saturday.

The victims were among hordes of migrants who were stopped at Maharashtra-Gujarat border and sent back as they were trying to return to their home states.

The tempo driver, who fled the scene, was later arrested.

Seven labourers from Karnataka were killed and four injured when the van in which they were travelling was hit by a truck near Pedda Golconda on the outskirts of Hyderabad late on Friday night, police said. The deceased included two children.

Of the 31 workers in the van, five died on the spot and two while undergoing treatment at a hospital, Assistant Commissioner of Traffic Vishwa Prasad said.

The workers were on their way back to their home town Raichur in Karnataka as the road project they were working in at Suryapet here was stalled due to the lockdown, Prasad said.

In another unfortunate incident, a labourer who was ill was left unattended by a doctor attached to ambulance service in Madhya Pradesh's Datia district, leading to his death at a bus stand, a health official said on Saturday.

Shanu Kushwaha (35), who worked as a labourer in Gwalior, apparently took ill.

According to eye-witnesses, he was left by unidentified persons at Bhaguvapura Passenger Shelter (bus stand) and when somebody spotted him, the 108 ambulance service was alerted.

An ambulance with doctor reached the spot, but the latter allegedly only examined him and left him at the same spot, without shifting him to a government hospital. He died on March 26.

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