Bihar picks 5,000 skilled migrants for road projectsUpdated: May 23, 2020 23:01 IST
Responding to chief minister Nitish Kumar’s call to provide jobs to migrant workers returning home, the road construction department (RCD) has identified around 5,000 migrants, who are currently under quarantine at various centres, to engage them in different road and bridge projects across the state.
On Friday, Kumar had spoken to migrant workers staying in various quarantine centres via video conference and promised to provide employment to them.
“We have identified around 5,000 skilled workers for construction work and asked agencies under the department to engage them,” RCD principal secretary Amrit Lal Meena said Saturday.
The selection was made on the basis of database prepared after skill mapping 2.10 lakh workers who are in quarantine.
“We are trying to rope in as many skilled workers in the ongoing 530 road and bridge projects as possible, without much financial implications,” said Meena.
The National Highway Authorities of India, which is executing several mega projects in Bihar, including Mahatma Gandhi Setu, Koilwar bridge, and Patna-Buxar highway, has also been requested to hire the migrant labourers.
Meena said the RCD had already requisitioned as many as 47 workers, currently under quarantine in Vaishali district, to join the workforce building the six-lane greenfield bridge over Ganga from Kachhi Dargah in Patna to Bidupur in Vaishali. He said many projects were facing shortage of labourers after a sizable chunk of them left for home districts in Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand after the lockdown relief.
A senior RCD official said hundreds of unskilled migrants have already by engaged for desilting of culverts, removal of grass and shrubs around roads and strengthening road shoulders.
Providing employment to migrants has become a mammoth task for the state government, especially in view of the mounting offensive by the opposition parties ahead of the state polls later this year .
Various departments, including rural development department, industries department and agriculture department, have already proposed various schemes to create job opportunities for the migrants.