KOLKATA: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday announced that her government will provide financial aid and relief to migrant workers and families from the state stranded outside due to the nationwide lockdown.
Seventeen more people have, meanwhile, tested positive for coronavirus in the state in the past 24 hours and five patients discharged after recovery.
The total number of people who tested positive for COVID-19 in Bengal has risen to 163.
The Union health ministry, however, put the tally at 213 on its website.
"We have decided to provide financial aid and relief to migrant workers and families from Bengal stranded in other states.
We are a poor state and have limited resources.
But we will still help our people stranded outside," Banerjee told journalists.
She said she spoke to her Maharashtra counterpart Uddhav Thackeray after a large number of migrant workers in Mumbai on Tuesday demanded that they be transported back to their native places.
The TMC leader, without naming anybody, appealed to everyone not to indulge in "communal and cheap" politics during the crisis caused by the pandemic.
It has been decided that the West Bengal boards higher secondary examination will be conducted in June.
"The students of class 11 and colleges would be promoted to the next class and semesters," she said.
Banerjee had announced earlier this week that schools and colleges will remain closed till June 10.
When asked about the Centres proposal of reopening 18 jute mills in the state, Banerjee said such discrimination will not be accepted.
"How can I discriminate among jute mills? If I allow the mills to open, all of them should start functioning with all precautionary measures with 15 per cent workforce," she said.