Ten migrant workers will be flying to Bihar tomorrow, thanks to their employer, a Delhi farmer, who is sponsoring their plane tickets.
Their flight to Patna will leave tomorrow at 6 am and from there they will go to their village in Samastipur.
“I never imagined in my life that I will be traveling in a plane. I don’t have words to express my happiness. But I am also little bit nervous about what I have to do when we reach the airport tomorrow,” Lakhinder Ram, who will be returning with his son, said.
He is grateful to Pappan Singh, a mushroom farmer in Delhi’s Tigipur village, who is helping them.
Thousands of migrants workers have taken to roads, walking, cycling or hitchhiking on trucks, to reach their homes since the nation-wide lockdown was imposed on March 25 to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.
When Mr Lakhinder, 50, called his wife to tell her he will be leaving for Bihar on a flight, he said she didn’t believe him.
He has been working with his employer since the past 27 years and his son Naveen Ram has been working for eight years.
Mr Lakhinder said the farmer has been taking care of their food and accommodation since the lockdown began on March 25.
Mr Pappan said he has booked tickets worth Rs 68,000 and is also giving each of them Rs 3,000 in cash so they don’t face any problems when they reach their home state.
He will also drop all his workers in his vehicles to the IGI Airport early on Thursday while following social distancing norms.
“These 10 workers would have left for their homes in Bihar in the first week of April on train but they could not go due to the lockdown,” Mr Pappan said.
He said he had made several attempts to send them back to their home state in a Shramik Special train but could not manage to do so.
“I could not have taken a risk by allowing my workers to walk thousands of miles as it would have put their lives in danger because we are getting to know these days that migrants meet with road accidents while going home,” he said.
Mr Pappan said he has completed all their medical formalities, in accordance with the requirements specified, so they have a smooth journey home.
“Medical fitness certificates have been issued by authorities to all 10 workers and they are fit to travel in a plane,” he said.