BENGALURU: A second batch of 26 migrants, including five children, who hail from Chhatisgarh, got a rare opportunity to fly to Raipur on Thursday from Bengaluru's Kempegowda International Airport. The adults were employed in Tamil Nadu and brought by bus to Bengaluru to facilitate their departure.
Alumni of National Law School of India University (NLSIU), who organised the first such flight from Bengaluru for migrants on June 4 were instrumental in doing so this time too. It is probably the first flight trip for all of them.
Due to the limited number of migrants this time, tickets were purchased on a regular Indigo flight heading to Raipur instead of a separate special flight for them.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, Vijay Grover, founder of Bangalore Media Foundation, who took care of logistics and food arrangements for the migrants said, "The migrants hail from Dharmapuri, Hosur and surrounding areas where they worked in plantations. A few worked as masons too. The group was supposed to take a migrant special train to Raipur from Chennai Central on Tuesday night but it was chaotic at the station and they could not board the train. One of them called NLSIU alumnus C N Nandakumar for help. They must have heard about the flight trip of the first group. We decided to help them also leave by flight and the trip was confirmed only on Wednesday evening." The ticket costs were taken care of by NLSIU alumni by mobilising funds.
The migrants were brought on Wednesday night from Chennai by a private bus, Grover said. They reached the KIA airport around 5 am on Thursday. "They were made to wait at the parking area. We helped them enter the airport around 10 am for the 1.10 pm regular flight. They reached Raipur by 2.35 pm," he added.
United Sikhs, a non-profit organisation, Nandakumar and Aarthi Challappa, NLSIU alumni played a key role in ensuring the trip took place, he added.
On June 4, the alumni had facilitated the departure of 185 migrants from KIA to Raichur with Delhi-based lawyer Ajay Bahl sponsoring a chartered IndiGo flight from Bengaluru for their sake.