350 migrants jump off trains to escape quarantine in Bihar, 180 detained
According to reports, the train (04062) carrying the migrant workers from Delhi’s Anand Vihar to Purnia halted near the Ranibagh railway crossing though there was no scheduled stoppage. Around 150 workers de-boarded and escaped.Updated: May 26, 2020 21:40 IST
As many as 350 migrants returning from Delhi and Patiala jumped off Shramik Special trains by pulling alarm chains in two separate incidents between Mansi-Saharsa rail sections near Simri-Bakhtiarpur station falling under East Central railway on Tuesday.
According to reports, the train (04062) carrying the migrant workers from Delhi’s Anand Vihar to Purnia halted near the Ranibagh railway crossing though there was no scheduled stoppage. Around 150 workers de-boarded and escaped.
On getting information, Simri Bakhtiarpur BDO Manoj Kumar reached the spot and also met station superintendent of Simri Bakhtiarpur railway station, B K Verma who said the train stopped at around 8.36 am to 8.41 am after passengers pulled the emergency brake. Later the BDO visited a nearby village and urged locals as well as the mukhia (headman) to inform them about the migrants who escaped from the train.
The locals also demanded migrants who escaped from the train should be kept in quarantine centres.
In another incident, at around 4.24 pm more than 250 migrant returnees fled a ‘Shramik Special’ train near the same rail section after pulling the alarm chain. After some locals spotted the migrant returnees coming from the railway track towards Ranibagh area, they informed police and railway protection force (RPF). While 180 of the migrants were detained by the locals, others managed to escape.
On getting information BDO Manoj Kumar and government railway police’s (GRP) station house officer (SHO) Ranveer Kumar reached the spot and brought them back to Simri Bakhtiarpur railway station.
Though the migrants refuted the allegation of chain pulling and said that they alighted from the train as it had stopped, the station superintendent insisted that the chain was pulled to stop the train. The migrants would be sent to their respective native places by buses after thermal scanning.
One of the migrants said the ‘Shramik Special’ train (4534) was carrying people of Saharsa from Patiala in Punjab. “We were facing a lot of problems owing to lack of jobs and the lockdown. We were returning home’, he added.
In a similar incident, migrants allegedly stopped another train headed towards Gaya from Chandigarh near Mahdi Ganj village in Sasaram district. Soon after, the passengers started deboarding the train and ran away to their destinations instead of going to the quarantine centre, GRP officials said. Twenty four passengers are suspected to have escaped from the train.