IMPHAL: The special train from Chennai carrying about 1,200 stranded Manipuris is all set to arrive at the Jiribam terminal on Tuesday. The train had started its journey from Chenna on Saturday and will arrive on March 12, Chief Minister had said earlier.
From Jiribam they will be brought to Imphal, around 200 km away, in special buses.
However, the exact timing of the arrival of the train is not known yet. Earlier, issuing Standard Operating Procedure to facilitate smooth transport and screening of the stranded people of the State of Manipur who are returning home by special trains run by the Indian Railways, the State Home Department had cautioned the passengers from mixing around bogies and that they should not move from one coach to another.
The train will terminate at Jiribam Railway Station and the movement of the passengers towards Imphal will depend on the time of the arrival of the train. In case the train arrives late in evening, the screening may be done inside the coaches and the passengers shall stay in the train overnight till the arrangement is made for bus movement in early morning, the Home Department had said.
On Monday, Chief Minister N. Biren Singh said that as the State Government has started bringing back State natives stranded in different States, management of this large number of returnees is likely to pose another big challenge to the Government.
The Chief Minister made the statement while taking part in the Video Conference of the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi with the Chief Ministers of different States.
He also thanked the Central Government and different State Governments for taking care of stranded Manipuris and extending co-operation to make possible their return to the State. Biren also said that the Government of Manipur has also been looking after large number of people hailing from different States.
Mentioning about uncontrollable situations being witnessed even in advanced countries, Biren Singh requested the Centre to lift the current lockdown in a staggered manner. Abrupt lifting of the lockdown may prove disastrous, he opined.
The Video Conference which began at 3 pm continued till late night as the Chief Ministers of all the States and Lieutenant Governors of all the Union Territories were given the chance to present their opinions.
The cost of ferrying the stranded people from Chennai to Jiribam is around Rs 12,00,600, while the cost of transporting them in 50 buses is around Rs 1,05,000, Biren said earlier.
Two other special trains carrying migrants will also depart from Punjab and Chandigarh on May 12 and May 14, respectively.
Around 45,000 people from Manipur stranded in various parts of the country have registered on tengbang.in, the portal set up by the state government, and 34,200 want to return, according to Chief Secretary J Suresh Babu.