The 350 buses sent by Uttar Pradesh government to transport around 8,000 students from the state, who are stuck in Kota since lockdown started, have reached the coaching city on Friday evening. The buses have been dispatched from Agra and Jhansi depots. These buses will drop the students to their respective districts.
The movement was initiated through the efforts of Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla who is the MP from Kota. Birla spoke about the issue to Union Home Secretary who helped facilitated the arrangement between UP and Rajasthan.
The buses will be parked at three different places in Kota and then moved to six different dispatch points to pick up the students. Kota administration will then send off the students after carefully listing the buses and the student passengers travelling in them. Coaching institutes and hostel administrators are working in tandem with the administration to prepare a database of the students and facilitate their travel to their homes.
Every bus will carry no more than 30 students. Before getting on the bus they will be screened and given a mask and sanitizer along with food packet and water bottle. The buses will carry students from specific districts.
Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot tweeted on the matter saying, “As the UP govt called back students of UP living in Kota Rajasthan, it can also be done for students from other states. Students in Kota can be sent to their home states on the consent of the concerned state govt so that these young boys and girls do not panic or feel depressed.”
Not just for Kota students; Gehlot has adopted a proactive approach regarding migrant labourers too ever since lockdown extension has been announced. He has been urging other states to send Rajasthan migrant labourers home to their villages. “In times like this the labourers get puzzled. They need to reach their homes once to feel at peace. Only then will they be able to deal with the situation with renewed vigour once the lockdown opens and things become normal,” Gehlot had said while speaking to media through VC on Thursday.
Over 1.5 lakh students live in Kota to get coaching for medical and engineering entrance exams. A large number of students had left Kota on April 20 after lockdown was announced in Rajasthan and trains stopped running.
At present there are around 30,000 students from other states in Kota. Coaching classes have been suspended and they have been living in their hostels since lockdown was announced. Out of these and estimated 8000 are from Uttar Pradesh, 6500 from Bihar, 4000 from Madhya Pradesh, 3000 from Jharkhand, 2000 from Haryana, 2000 from Maharashtra, 1000 from North East and around 1000 from West Bengal.