Call to aid: NALSAR students and alumni raise funds to aid Migrant Workers stranded amid COVID-19
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Call to aid: NALSAR students and alumni raise funds to aid Migrant Workers stranded amid COVID-19

Donations will be received into the account of an NGO run by one of the alumni and are eligible for 80G tax exemption.

Bar & Bench

Students and alumni of the National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (NALSAR), Hyderabad are mobilising funds to aid migrant workers stranded across the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The initiative focuses on working with the Government, transport services, NGOs and civil society to ensure that the workers are able to get back to their homes and to ensure that they have access to food and medicines.

In the first three days of the initiative, a sum of Rs 20 lakhs was mobilised to be spent on various projects launched for the welfare of stranded migrants.

The initiatives undertaken so far, in partnerships with NGOs and civil society include the following:

  1. In collaboration with the Jai Bhim Vikas Seva Sanstha, the travel of 9 migrant worker families (employed in a brick kiln) comprising of 20 adults and 25 children was facilitated from Bhilwara district, Rajasthan, to Chitrakoot, Uttar Pradesh. Due to the lockdown, the brick kiln these workers were employed at was closed and they were left stranded with little money and no shelter, water and basic amenities and had commenced a journey by foot. The total allocation for this project is Rs 1.2 lakhs, which will cover travel, food, cash transfer for immediate needs and rations to sustain the workers when they get home.

  2. In collaboration with Loving Migrant Workers Network and Samerth Charitable Trust, the flight travel of 174 workers and their children from Bengaluru to Raipur is being arranged. The costs for the journey of these families home will be borne. Further, a cash transfer of Rs 1,000 is also being made for each person for immediate relief. Logistical support through partner organisations (including pick up/drop off to the airport, food, water, protective gear and ration kits) will also be provided. A sum of Rs 16 lakhs will be spent on this project.

  3. In partnership with Goonj, the home-bound return of 22 migrant workers from Jharkhand who were stranded in Aloor, Kerala was facilitated. The travel was arranged from Aloor to Bokaro, Jharkhand by a Shramik train. Ground-level volunteers ensured they reached the screening centre, provided them with meals, besides bread, biscuits and water bottles (provided by Goonj) and are presently ensuring that they receive regular meals along their journey.

  4. When it was discovered that migrant workers and their children on a train from Bengaluru to Nagpur were travelling without food, volunteers at Secunderabad liaised with the Centre for Social Justice, to provide food to the passengers at the Secunderabad station.

An appeal has also been made for public support by way of donations.

"We continue to collect funds to organise and support similar initiatives across the country. Given that there is going to be greater need for relief and rehabilitation in the coming weeks and months, we hope that people will continue to donate generously and disseminate our message widely."
Press Release
It is informed further, "Donations will be received into the account of an NGO run by one of the alumni and are eligible for 80G tax exemption. There will be complete transparency in the use of funds."

Read the Press Release:

NALSAR Initiative - Press Release.pdf
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