First evacuation train from Chennai carrying more than 1000 passengers returned to Manipur on Wednesday, official sources said.
As many as 1,140 people who were stranded in Chennai arrived by a special train at Jiribam Railway Station around 1 pm. The passengers will travel forward to their respective home districts in buses arranged by the state transport department.
“As per information received by the health department as many as 1,140 passengers arrived on the train,” the health department stationed at Jiribam said.
As mandated, screening of the passengers for COVID-19 symptoms district wise was underway at the Jiribam railway station at the time of filing the report.
“Screening of passengers is underway. Once the screening is over, the passengers will be sent to their respective districts,” the health department told.
People headed for Ukhrul were the first lot to be screened and sent off in the buses arranged by the state transport department. Once they reach their respective districts, they will be kept at community quarantine centres as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of Coronavirus.
“They will be kept at community quarantine centres of their districts where they will be under the surveillance of health officials,” the health department said.
“We understand that it must be difficult for passengers to travel non stop such a long distance. We appeal to the people to cooperate as we are in a very peculiar situation. Manipur is giving its best effort,” state Chief Secretary J Suresh Babu
The train from Chennai left MGR Central railway station on May 10 at 8 pm. As many as 50 buses were sent Jiribam to bring back the returnees to Imphal.
Speaking to the official press and media on May 12 over the phone, the Jiribam DC said that necessary arrangements had been made to receive the returnees.
Another train will start from Punjab on Thursday and likely to reach in two days. This will be followed by another train from Bangalore on Friday. We are trying to bring one more train from Chennai, Baroda, the chief secretary said.