As high demands for migrant labor picked up in Kerala after easing of pandemic-related constraints, hundreds of workers from the east and northeastern states have started coming back to the state. Since regular train services are yet to reopen on these routes, these workers are making bus journeys lasting up to five days to reach Kerala.
These laborers were in distress as there is no job in their village. Thus they were forced to take the bus, despite the journey being long and strenuous. A day’s casual work fetches between Rs 900 and Rs 1,000 in Kerala which attracts migrants to the state.
According to bus operators, at least a dozen buses serve every day from Kochi and suburban areas to east and northeastern states to transport migrants. There are agents on both sides to get the migrants for the journeys. Buses are being operated from Kerala up to Nagaon in Assam and Howrah and Siliguri in West Bengal.