Srinagar, April 28: Inside a small room, Rahul, and his five co-workers have been grappling with hunger for the last one week.
.Living in rented accommodation in the Khanyar area, Rahul had spent all his savings on his daily needs. “Not a penny is left in our pockets now. We are hungry for the past one week. We were feeding on biscuits and water,” said Rahul, who hails from Rajasthan.
After realizing their plight, locals immediately swung into action and arranged rice, flour, oil, and other essentials for them.
“Locals helped us a lot in these hard times. If they would not have come to our rescue we would have died of hunger. Corona say pehle hum sab ko bookh mar deti madam (Hunger would kill us all before corona),” Rahul said.
Banwari, Rahul’s elder brother who has been working in Kashmir for the last 10 years, said locals have arranged food for them but they are running short of cooking gas. “We called up Labour Commission for help but they said they are not providing cooking gas,” he said
Mushtaq Ahmad, a resident of Khanyar said the moment they came to know that the laborers have nothing to eat, they arranged food and other essentials for them.
“Not only non-locals, but we are helping everyone who is in need. I request people if there is any family or any person facing difficulties, they should bring it in our notice. We will try our best to help them,” he said.
Figures reveal that around 18000 non-locals are stranded in Kashmir as travel has been suspended to contain the spread of Coronavirus.
In most of the areas, locals have arranged food and other essential for the migrant laborers. In the old city of Srinagar, people have helped around 70 non-local laborers who had run out of food and money. Likewise, in Pulwama district, many locals provided food and shelter to the non-local laborers.