Brinda Karat to Modi and Shah: Who Killed the Woman in Covid Lockdown?

Brinda Karat. Photo: CPI(M)
Brinda Karat. Photo: CPI(M)

The Modi government has completely ignored the plight of poor workers who are not only stranded or walking on the roads, but they are also carrying Covid infection with them to their villages.

By Rakesh Raman

Brinda Karat – a CPI(M) leader – is asking Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi and his close associate Home Minister Amit Shah about the untimely death of a woman during the coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown recklessly imposed by Modi.

Reports reveal that a woman’s body was found at the Muzaffarpur Railway Station in Bihar on May 25. A video clip of a child playing with the shroud of his dead mother went viral on social media.

According to her family, the woman died of extreme heat, hunger, and dehydration because the train in which she was traveling to reach home from Gujarat during the lockdown had no facilities of water and food.

“Who is responsible for this woman’s death?” Ms Karat asked Modi and Shah in her tweet posted on June 1.

The Ministry of Railways of the Government of India has started Shramik (worker) special trains for the transportation of hundreds of thousands of migrant labourers stranded in different parts of the country due to the nation-wide lockdown to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

As the Modi government has completely failed to handled the Covid crisis, a large number of migrant workers have been walking on the roads to reach their native places because they lost their livelihoods in the cities where they worked.

In the absence of transport facilities, a 15-year-old girl Jyoti Kumari carried her wounded father on a bicycle for over 1,200 km to reach their village.

While Jyoti Kumari could reach her home on the bicycle, hundreds of poor workers are dying on the roads after Modi had imposed the lockdown recklessly on March 24. As some of them do not have food and water during their torturous journeys, they are eating even dead animals to stay alive.

For example, a video of a starving man eating a dead dog during the lockdown went viral on social media. The man, who could not find any food to eat during his on-foot journey on the Delhi-Jaipur highway, had no other option but to eat the animal carcass. A passerby then offered him food.

The Modi government has completely ignored the plight of poor workers who are not only stranded or walking on the roads, but they are also carrying Covid infection with them to their villages. Nearly 70% of India’s 1.4 billion people live in villages.

While India has already become the epicenter of coronavirus infection because of the inaction and negligence of the Modi government, millions of people are expected to get infected in the next couple of months in the rural areas also.

Although the Indian government is not revealing the actual number of Covid cases and deaths in the country which are far higher than what is being reported, according to official data as of today (June 2) India had nearly 190,000 cases and 5,394 deaths. And India is at No. 7 in the list of worst-affected countries.

RMN News Service cannot independently confirm the veracity of the videos which are available in the public domain on the web.

By Rakesh Raman, who is a national award-winning journalist and social activist. He is the founder of a humanitarian organization RMN Foundation which is working in diverse areas to help the disadvantaged and distressed people in the society. He also creates and publishes a number of digital publications and research reports on different subjects. These publications include the “Covid Health Bulletin” that covers global coronavirus news and views.

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Rakesh Raman