Stranded students boarding a bus to Wokha in Kohima on Thursday
Stranded students boarding a bus to Wokha in Kohima on Thursday|EastMojo image
NAGALAND

Nagaland: Thousands stranded amid COVID-19 lockdown to return home

1,034 stranded persons -- out of 6,688 who registered for public transport -- sent off from Nagaland capital Kohima to Mon, Tuensang, Mokokchung, Wokha & Dimapur

Medolenuo Ambrocia

Medolenuo Ambrocia

Kohima: Following the state government’s directive to facilitate inter-district movements of stranded persons for three days, over thousands have reported in Kohima alone to return to the other districts in Nagaland. The Kohima administration informed that out of the 6,688 persons who registered to avail of free public transport services, 1,034 persons were so far sent to the districts of Mon, Tuensang, Wokha, Dimapur and Mokokchung as of Thursday afternoon.

Speaking to media persons at the Kohima local ground where the transport services are being provided for inter-district movement of stranded persons, housing minister Tongpang Ozukum, who is also in-charge of Kohima district, said that so far 6,688 stranded persons from Kohima have registered with the administration to return to their respective districts.

“Kohima is facing more problems than other districts because there are around 6,688 stranded persons [who have registered] and the number keeps increasing. Transport service is another problem and so we are trying to requisition all the government buses. In the meantime, we also made an appeal to the private bus owners for necessary assistance. Overall, we are doing our best and the efforts made by the administration are praise worthy,” Ozukum said.

ADC Kohima Lithrongla Tongpi Rutsa said that the services began on Thursday around 6 am according the lists of names that were produced by various organisations and the stranded persons were sent off after proper screening. According to the conditions of the vehicle, the arrangements were also categorically made.

A young girl being screened by the medical officer at the Kohima Local ground on Thursday
A young girl being screened by the medical officer at the Kohima Local ground on Thursday EastMojo image

As of Thursday afternoon, 1,034 stranded persons were sent off from the Kohima Local Ground with 17 buses sent to Mon district, eight buses to Tuensang district, three buses each to Mokokchung and Wokha, and two buses to Dimapur district.

The officer said that 45 government department buses and six Nagaland State Transport (NST) buses were requisitioned to ferry the passengers from Kohima. On the request of the Dimapur administration, additional 10 buses were also sent to Dimapur to assist the stranded persons in the district. Around 3,000 stranded persons have reportedly registered in Dimapur district.

Rutsa also informed that as per the direction from the state government, police escorts have been sent along with the buses to Mon which have left via Assam. Two additional buses were also to the Assam border ferrying 52 migrant workers on Wednesday after all formalities and screenings were done, she added.

With a three-day timeline to facilitate inter-district movements which began on Thursday, Rutsa said that by the second day, the districts of Longleng, Phek, Kiphire and Zunheboto will be covered. In regard to the persons from Kohima who are presently stranded in other districts, the officer said that all district administrations are in coordination and arrangements are made by the respective districts.

Meanwhile, drug users from Arunachal Pradesh who were stranded in Kohima after the completion of the rehabilitation courses expressed gratitude to both the government of Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh for facilitation of their return journey.

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