ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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A Tragic Travelogue

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Lakhs of migrant workers for several days have been foot-slogging on the roads and railway tracks with the hope toreach their place of origin or home town. The journey home does not seem to be smooth as it is filled with suffering, intensified with uncertainty of getting food, water and medical assistance. Footslogging has endangered the very lives of these workers. As has been reported in some of the sensitive electronic media, these workers are forced not only to risk their own lives but that of their small babies and babies about to be born. According to a media report, a woman migrant worker set herself on a journey in an advanced stage of pregnancy and was forced to give birth to her baby by the roadside, while 16 migrant workers were crushed by a goods train near Aurangabad in Maharashtra.

The way these workers travelling experiences are unfolding, suggests as if the workers are already enacting a common script of tragedy; a narrative which has no thrill, adventure and excitement. The script, therefore, is not tantalising but deeply tragic, which makes an ethical demand on us, the members of civil society, to realise that it is the failure of the governments that has forced these workers to resort to this mode of journey, which might look clandestine to some government authorities.

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Published On : 20th Jan, 2024

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