Migrant workers employed in various sectors of Anantapur district began the long journey back to their hometowns on Wednesday. Hundreds of them reached bus and train stations across the district.
Around 50 workers from Raichur, Karnataka, employed in the railway doubling and electrification work in Parsannayapalli on the outskirts of Anantapur, left their temporary accommodation in Vidyut Nagar and drove to the RTC bus station to catch a bus to Mantralayam in the Kurnool district Cross the border and take another available transport to Raichur.
Manjunath, a migrant worker from Raichur, told the story The Hindu that they also expected a lockdown in Andhra Pradesh, as the COVID19-positive cases increased sharply and Karnataka had imposed a 14-day restriction from Wednesday.
“If we stay here and a ban is imposed, we will be in the same situation as we were last year. We want to return to our hometowns as early as possible, ”said Manjunath, who was carrying a large suitcase and a backpack.
One group of 18 workers was out early in the morning while the others prepared to leave Anantapur at the earliest, he added.
The RTC services to Karnataka have been discontinued
The APSRTC suspended bus services to all destinations in Karnataka on Tuesday evening, and workers anticipate that services within the state will be suspended soon.
At the bus station in Anantapur, 20 workers got off a bus arriving from Tadipatri.
They all went to the train station to catch a train to Calcutta. These workers said that many had left for Calcutta during the week and others were planning to leave soon.
The workers from West Bengal, who only knew a little bit of Telugu, are employed by companies that grow fruit and other horticultural crops. The ‘Happy Banana’ and ‘Ini Farms’ have banana processing and packaging units in the Tadipatri and Putluru mandals of the district.
In Tumukunta near Hindupur, the district’s largest industrial area, none of the workers leave the company as the companies take care of their returning employees by receiving assurances from their employers.