Chennai Corporation has recently arranged vehicles to ferry homeless people from its shelters to their native places.
Following lockdown, the civic body rescued homeless daily wage workers and those stranded due to cancellation of train/bus services.
They were sheltered at Corporation’s Mandaveli shelter, and at the community halls in C.P.Ramaswamy Road and Karaneeswarar Pagoda Street
Says Rajesh, a Corporation official who manages the shelter at Karaneeswarar Pagoda Street, “After the lockdown extended, the homeless people could not stay at the shelter. Most of them belonged to places like Coimbatore, Kanchipuram, and Vellore. They wanted to go to their native places and be with their families. So we arranged private vehicles to ferry them to their hometowns.”
“We had some 120 homeless and daily wage workers at our shelter. However, now there are only 20. The remaining have been dropped to their native places. Those who were not willing to go to their native places have stayed back, he says.
Similarly, some 11 homeless persons sheltered at the Mandaveli shelter have also left to their native places through vehicles arranged by the Corporation. The shelter has some 65 inmates now.
However, around 52 migrant labourers, mostly from North India, who were stranded at the Central railway station after the cancellation of train services continue to stay at the community hall in C.P. Ramaswamy Road.
Says a civic worker who manages this shelter, “These migrant workers also want to go to their native places. Hence, our higher officials are holding discussions to see if they can make the necessary travel arrangements.”