Ex-babus suggest incentives to hold back migrant labourers
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Mumbai: While the lockdown has been extended for next two weeks, a group of retired IAS officers have suggested incentives for migrant labourers who prefer not go back to their native places. They also suggested that transportation of labourers should be done based on the quarantine capacity of the receiving destination. The group, which does not want to be named, has drafted a plan titled as “Migrant Movement Strategy Paper”.

Maharashtra have total 7,36,426 migrant labourers and out of this second highest 1,82,854 are in Kokan region which includes Mumbai and MMRDA.

“With the objective of reducing the demand for immediate travel, a policy of calibrated re-opening of the establishments/industries at the origin may be considered. Logistics and warehousing businesses may be permitted to resume full services with social distancing as a large number of migrants are employed in this sector.

Availability of employment couldmotivate anumber of migrants to reconsider their immediate travel plans. The policy may also include providing incentives such as temporary ration cards,freepre-paidtalk-timevouchers, health insurance, home journey allowance, employers’ reimbursement of EPFO contribution and weekly/fortnightly payment of wages. Additional incentives such as a home journey allowance may beprovidedfor thosemigrants who decide to postpone their travel for a month,” the paper suggests

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Free Press Journal