Nearly five months have passed since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a nationwide lockdown in India to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.
The lockdown was announced on March 24 and was to be implemented from March 25, not giving much time to migrant workers in cities to go back to their villages.
With the lockdown, the migrant workers’ work and source of income suddenly stopped. They could no longer live in rented houses or buy groceries.
The result was a migrant exodus. Migrant workers in tens of thousands from all over India returned to their villages, primarily in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh – many even on foot because they couldn’t afford to live in the cities anymore.
After almost five months of this – many of those workers returned to cities as the lockdown was eased in several parts of the country. The Wire talked to them to find out their current situation.‘