Kerala Kaumudi Online
Wednesday, 05 August 2020 8.04 PM IST

Congress in Kerala slams LDF government for refusing party's offer to meet migrants train travel expenses


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) on Tuesday lashed out at the state government after various district administrations in the state allegedly refused to accept Rs 10 lakh each offered by the district units of the Congress party as the train ticket expenses for migrant labourers to their native state.

KPCC president Mullappally Ramachandran alleged the state government has refused to accept the money offered by various district Congress Committees.

Earlier in the morning, Alappuzha DCC president M Liju told the media that the Congress offered the amount after party leader Sonia Gandhi announced that the party would pay the ticket charge of migrant workers.

"We offered the amount to the district administration as the ticket charge of migrant labourers from Alappuzha to Bihar. At least 1,140 labourers are ready to embark on their journey by today evening. We calculated the total amount to be collected from the workers and offered the administration, the amount. However, the collector said it was not possible for the district administration to collect the amount," Liju told PTI.

Ramachandran said the district administrations of various districts refused to accept the cheque.

"Our district office bearers approached the collectors but they simply refused to accept the cheque. Our Chief Minister everyday tells us that the state is short of money," Ramachandran said.

However, an officer of the district administration said they have received no government order to receive the money as train ticket charge from any political parties.

Meanwhile, CPI(M) MP from Alappuzha A M Arif said the action of the Congress party was just to garner attention.

"They can give it to the workers or book ticket by themselves. If they want to pay for the tickets of the workers, they can. Why would they seek the help of a third party (Collector)," Arif asked.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has ridiculed the KPCC's promise to pay for the travel expenses of the migrants in response to an appeal from their national leadership and said people were aware of the "consequences of such a move."

Vijayan also said that the guest workers were paying for their ticket fare, even as the state expected the Centre to bear their travel expenses.

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