Berhampur: Homecoming of migrant workers in hordes from Surat city to vote in the upcoming panchayat polls has sparked fears over further spread of Covid-19 in Ganjam district, a report said.
Residents apprehend that the return of the migrants might lead to a repetition of last year’s Covid situation while the epidemic is now on the decline in the district.
Lakhs of people hailing from Polsara, Beguniapada, Khallikote, Hinjilicut, Aska, Sanakhemundi blocks and other areas in the district usually work in cotton mills and other establishments in Surat city of Gujarat to earn a living.
Even though they work in Surat, their names are still in the voters’ list of Ganjam. Leaders of various political parties are making all necessary arrangements of their return to the district to vote for their candidates in the elections.
Meanwhile, lakhs of workers have returned home. The migrant workers returning home were seen crowding at Berhampur, Chhatrapur, Khallikote and Ganjam railway stations.
On their arrival at the railway stations, they are being welcomed by the ruling party representatives.
It is alleged that no thermal screening is being conducted on their arrival at the railway stations which might lead to return of the last year’s pandemic situation in the district.
On the other hand, the campaigning for panchayat elections has remained a lacklustre affair due to Covid restrictions imposed in the state. Accompanied by limited number of supporters, candidates have launched the door-to-door campaign and are trying to woo the voters in their favour.
The ruling BJD candidates are on the campaign trail highlighting the developmental programmes of the state government to lure the voters while the opposition BJP and Congress have termed the claims of the ruling party as false and a political gimmick to grab votes.