Recently, the government has allowed migrant workers, students, tourists, homeless who are struck due to lockdown to return to their villages. However, it has been made mandatory for everyone to get a medical certificate to fill the form online. Aspirants have started flocking to hospitals and clinics to get these medical certificates. However, social distancing parameter suggested by the government has seen completely vanished during the action.
The government has made it possible for workers, labourers, students or tourists from other states or districts to return home. For this, it is mandatory to register online on the government’s website www.covid19.mhpolice.in and also to get a certificate from a registered medical professional that there are no symptoms of cold, fever or cough in him/her. The Mira Bhayander Municipal Corporation has also made arrangements to issue medical certificates to the returnees from the municipal hospitals or clinics.
As soon as they got the information, the aspirants rushed to the municipal hospitals and clinics on Monday morning. The queues up to half a kilometre outside every hospital were seen. They were standing facing each other, violating the social distancing norms. There was no mechanism in place to control the crowd. Therefore, it was an open invitation for the coronavirus to spread.
Importantly, the Bharat Ratna Pandit Bhimsen Joshi (Tembha) Hospital is currently designated as COVID-19 Hospital. No one other than the corona patient is allowed to visit in this hospital. However, there was a long queue outside Tembha Hospital also as medical certificate facility was provided in this hospital. MBMC has allowed 11 Health units to issue a medical certificate to these people.
Difficult road ahead
Even after getting a medical certificate, the road to return to the village is difficult. Those returning to the village need to fill in their details online while uploading this medical certificate and Adhaar card on www.covid19.mhpolice.in. Many of those lined up appear to be from the migrant working class. Even, they don’t have a basic cell phone. Filling out the information online is going to be a hardship for them.
However, recognizing this problem of the workers, some corporators have made arrangements to fill in the information online in their offices on their behalf. www.mibhatimes.com received two messages from corporators Sneha Shailesh Pandey of Shiv Sena and Manoj Dubey of BJP that they are helping migrants to fill the form. However, even here, we can see a huge huge crowd. So, first, stand in line for hours to get a medical certificate and then queue to fill in the information online. Even though, they have no idea about when they will be allowed to go to their native place.