Coronavirus | Odia migrant worker returning from AP dies of exhaustion

A 28-year-old migrant worker returning from Andhra Pradesh died under the Chamakhandi police station area of the Ganjam district on Saturday.

His poor family in the Nayagarh district had not been able to reach the MKCG medical college and hospital in Berhampur till Sunday afternoon to claim the body for funeral.

Bimal Sahu (28) was a few hours away from his home at Hariharpur village under the Gania police station in Nayagarh district. He was part of a group of seven migrant workers, who had entered Odisha by truck on Saturday afternoon through the Girisola inter-State check-gate.

Near Jagannathpur under the Chamakhandi police station in the Ganjam district, he fell unconscious because of exhaustion and scorching summer heat. His compatriots had immediately got down from the truck and contacted the local police. He was transported to the MKCG medical college and hospital but the doctors could not save him.

Also read: Odisha migrant worker spends time alone after long walk from Mumbai

The police personnel informed his family members of the death. His body has been preserved at the hospital to be handed over to his family. The family, whose dire economic condition compelled the youth to migrate and work in a roadside dhaba, is in a state of shock.

As the dhaba remained shut down due to the locdown, he was stranded in Rajamahendravaram in Andhra Pradesh without income. They started walking towards Odisha, around 450 km away, on May 15. On the way, they had managed to board a truck.

Also read | Short end of the stick: on assistance to migrant workers

Deaths add to the mental woes of the returning migrant workers and their families. On Saturday, B. Noka Patra, a Surat returnee now in a quarantine centre at Chhatrapur in the Ganjam district, was barred by the administration to perform the last rites of his mother. As his quarantine period has not ended, he was not allowed to get close to his bereaved family members. He was taken to the cremation ground at his village Golapalli by a COVID-19 ambulance and was only allowed to watch the funeral from a distance.

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