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Tuesday, Sep 28, 2021
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Lockdown migration: Mumbai autorickshaws crowd MP highway

Lockdown migration: Mumbai autorickshaws crowd MP highway
outlookindia.com
1970-01-01T05:30:00+0530
(Eds: Repeating after adding two words in 2nd para)

Indore, May 11 (PTI) The National Highway Number 3,

also called Mumbai-Agra Road that touches Indore in Madhya

Pradesh through a bypass road, is seeing a steady stream of

autorickshaws from the country''s commercial capital as people

move back to their native towns and villages amid the

coronavirus-enforced lockdown that has rendered them jobless.

Officials and eye-witnesses put the number of these

three-wheelers from Mumbai crossing the Indore Bypass Road at

50 every hour (rpt every hour).

Mumbai has the highest number of COVID-19 cases for

any city in the country and a strict lockdown since late March

has taken almost all autorickshaws and black-and-yellow taxis

off the roads there, leaving thousands of drivers and their

kin jobless and without adequate cash in hand.

Among them is Baleshwar Yadav (54), who is returning

from the country''s commercial capital to his native village in

Jharkhand''s Hazaribagh, with eight people, including two women

and three children, cramming into his three-wheeler.

"I have been driving an autorickshaw in Mumbai for the

past 12 years. But everything is closed there now. I spent two

months digging into my savings but that, too, has run out. I

have no choice but to return to my village," he told PTI on

Monday.

Asked about the possibility of returning to Mumbai in

the near future, he replied, "Whether it is six months or a

year, I have to return because I still have to pay

installments on the bank loan with which I bought this

vehicle. Till the situation normalises in Mumbai, I will

engage myself in agriculture and cattle rearing."

Ajay Yadav (36), hailing from Jaunpur district in

Uttar Pradesh, said he had been driving an autorickshaw in

Mumbai''s Goregaon area for the last four years, and had left

for his native village two days ago with a couple of friends.

"There was no food in Mumbai due to lack of work. We

will think of returning to the city later," he said.

"Around 50 autorickshaws are passing through this road

every hour. Most of them are from Mumbai," claimed Rajkumar

Patel, a volunteer at a dining stall set up by a social

organisation on the Indore bypass road.

Deputy Superintendent of Police (Traffic) Umakant

Chaudhary said autorickshaws were being allowed to pass only

after those inside are subjected to medical screening when

they enter the border of Madhya Pradesh.

"We have been seeing a sizeable number of

autorickshaws from Mumbai on the Indore Bypass Road over the

last one week. We have also received information that some

drivers are charging people to transport them to their native

places in other states," the DySP said.

Chaudhary said CNG-fitted autorickshaws were seen in

long queues at fuel pumps on the Indore Bypass road since the

number of pumps selling CNG on this route is less.

"On this route, CNG pumps open between 6 am and 10 pm.

In view of the problems faced by autorickshaws, locals are

demanding these pumps be kept open 24 hours," Chaudhary added.

PTI HWP MAS BNM

RSY RSY


Disclaimer :- This story has not been edited by Outlook staff and is auto-generated from news agency feeds. Source: PTI

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