People carrying goods distributed by the district administration in Mandi on Sunday.(Birbal Sharma)
People carrying goods distributed by the district administration in Mandi on Sunday.(Birbal Sharma)

2,500 Himachalis trying to sneak into state quarantined at interstate borders

The official from the state disaster department who did not wish to be named revealed the data
Hindustan Times, Shimla | By Gaurav Bisht, Shimla
UPDATED ON MAR 29, 2020 10:48 PM IST

Himachalis stuck in different parts of the country are making desperate efforts to return home as more than 2,500 persons trying to sneak into the state from interstate borders with Punjab, Haryana and Uttarakhand were quarantined. The official from the state disaster department who did not wish to be named revealed the data.

As there has been no fresh case of Covid-19 in the state, the migrant labourers were pushing their luck to return to their native villages.

“All those trying to enter the state have been quarantined at the borders,” said director general of police Sitaram Mardi.

“Over the past few days, there have been desperate efforts from migrants as well as the Himachalis trying to enter the state. We are making one last appeal that they adhere to adhere to the lockdown and curfew norms or action would be initiated against them as per the provision of the State Disaster Management Act,” he said.

Mardi appealed to the people to stay inside their houses and maintain social distancing.

As many as 200 persons who were trying to enter the state have been quarantined at Tunuhatti in Chamba. More than 300 persons were quarantined at different locations in Una district that shares its boundary with Punjab. About 400 persons were stuck at Parwanoo – the gateway between Haryana and Punjab, while few people were also stuck at the inter-state border in Uttrakhand at Poanta Sahib and at Kuddu barrier in Jubbal tehsil.

Legislators come to migrants’ rescue

On the sixth day of the lockdown, migrant workers who managed to reach shimla by foot after their contractors abandoned them were provided ration supplies by Shimla rural legislator Vikramaditya Singh at the old bus stand here. While the town ran short of veggie supplies, Kasumpti legislators sent vans laden with fresh vegetables to the crowded new Shimla. The legislator also ensured that vegetables provided at the doorsteps are sold at market price. Shillai legislator Harwardhan Chauhan shot off a letter to chief minister Jai Ram Thakur, asking him to make arrangement for the people of his constituency stuck in different parts.

Foreigners stranded in different locations

As many as 140 foreign tourists are stranded in the state. Four foreign tourists— two from Russia, two Americans— while one each from Germany, Finland, Netherlands, France and Dubai are putting up in a government guest house in Sirmaur district. Five foreigners were stranded at Solan district, 100 foreign tourists in Kangra, two in Shimla, 29 foreign tourists were stranded in Kullu district. About 100 domestic tourists are stuck in different locations of the state.

Stranded students to be lodged in Himachal Bhawan

In the wake of students stranded in Delhi, Himachal government has thrown open the state guest house in Delhi—Himachal Bhawan —for their lodging, chief minister Jai Ram Thakur, who reviewed the situation with deputy commissioners and police chief revealed. The state government has decided to operate Himachal Bhawan and Himachal Sadan in New Delhi to provide food and shelter facility to such students of the state who are stranded in Delhi NCR and not able to travel to their native places in Himachal Pradesh due to the lockdown. Similar facility has also been made available in Himachal Bhawan, Chandigarh.

Emergency numbers

A spokesperson of the state government said on Sunday that that for necessary information people can contact OSD, Himachal Bhawan, Delhi, Sushil Singla, on mobile number 98685-39423, deputy resident commissioner, Himachal Bhawan, Delhi, Vivek Mahajan on 88028-03672 or landline number 011-23711964.

In Chandigarh, the manager of Himachal Bhawan, Anil Kapoor can be contacted on 81463-13167 or receptionist Mahinder Chauhan on 99888-89009 or on landline number 0172-5000104, 2638278

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