On June 29, the Supreme Court acknowledged the Uttar Pradesh government’s efforts to manage the migrant crisis during the Covid-19 pandemic. A government spokesperson said that the apex court praised the government for establishing a “robust system of registration of migrant workers” when they returned to the state after the lockdown was imposed across the country in 2020.
On May 22, 2021, the UP government had submitted a detailed affidavit in which the steps govt took for the migrants were mentioned. The affidavit was mentioned in the order passed by the court while disposing of two petitions related to the migrant crisis last year. The court said, “A portal of the Relief Commissioner has been created on which all relevant details of all migrant workers are to be uploaded in real-time.”
In its observation, the court quoted the data submitted by the director, Training and Employment (UP). The data states that 37,84,255 migrant workers came back to their native places during the Covid-19 pandemic period. Based on the data, the court noted, “Their skill mapping has been completed, and 10,44,710 labourers have already been given employment under different schemes of the state government.”
It further noted that as per the data available from April 1, 2021, to June 8, 2021, details of 3,79,220 migrant workers have already been registered and their skills mapped on the portal (rahat.up.nic.in) launched by the UP government.
Notably, the Uttar Pradesh government is also providing financial support to migrant workers under DBT. The Relief Commissioner’s portal is being used to ensure the money reaches the migrant workers. The decision about the fund transfer was taken by the state cabinet on May 15.
In its statement, the spokesperson said that the court had issued certain guidelines and asked states and UTs to follow them to take care of the migrant workers. He added, “The court had taken suo motu cognizance of the plight of the migrants and later added an intervention application in the writ petition.”
Uttar Pradesh achieved several milestones while providing support to migrants
Since the pandemic kicked in, the Uttar Pradesh government acted swiftly to ensure support is provided to all migrant workers who come back to their native places amid the nationwide lockdown. In May 2020, when migrant workers started to return to UP, CM Yogi set up a migrant commission to find ways to provide jobs to the workers. He also directed the officials to ensure no migrant have to leave UP once things get normalized. A lot of steps were taken for the benefit of migrant workers.
In November 2020, it was reported that UP ranked number one in providing jobs to migrant workers by generating ten crore person-days under Gareeb Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan. The said scheme was announced by PM Modi in May 2020 to provide jobs to migrant workers.
In May 2021, CM Yogi Adityanath had directed officials to start community kitchens to provide food for the poor amid lockdown. He asked them to ensure there is no scarcity of food for labourers, daily wage workers, street vendors, handcart pullers and others and that they are provided with proper meals during the course of lockdown.