Assam's Dhubri district struggled to cope with the massive influx of returnees. Waste from the quarantine facility was strewn all around a nearby plot. Residents rued that the garbage bags contain discarded PPE kits, food items and medical equipment that has triggered a health risk. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
Dhubri struggled to cope with the massive influx of returnees. Waste from the quarantine facility was strewn all around a nearby plot. Residents rued that the garbage bags contained discarded PPE kits, food items and medical equipment that has triggered a health risk. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
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Dhubri: More than 200 km away from the capital city of Guwahati, Dhubri — the last district of Lower Assam — has witnessed a massive influx of returnees in recent months, after the Narendra Modi government imposed a nationwide lockdown on 24 March to arrest the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Nearly 77,870 people, mostly migrant labourers, entered the state through two checkpoints on the Assam-West Bengal border. Approximately 52,985 people accessed the checkpoint in Srirampur while about 24,885 people came through Chagolia, according to official figures.

ThePrint’s Yimkumla Longkumer and Angana Chakrabarti visited the Assam-West Bengal border in Dhubri’s Chagolia, where huge makeshift facilities have been set up to screen and quarantine those returning to Assam.

The registration booth setup for migrants at the Assam-West Bengal border where screening takes place. The returnees are then and taken to a nearby swab collection facility. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
The registration booth at the checkpoint in Chagolia where individuals returning to the state are screened. The returnees are then taken to a nearby swab collection facility | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
Empty chairs line the screening facility at the Assam-West Bengal border. The influx of the returnees has gone down sharply since May. At the peak of the influx, around 1800 migrants would pass through the interstate gate. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
Empty chairs line the screening facility. The influx of returnees has gone down sharply since June. At its peak, around 1,800 migrants passed through the interstate checkpoint. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
Migrant returnees from Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala, wait for their turn at the swab collection facility that has been setup close to the Assam-West Bengal border. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
Migrant returnees — from Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala — wait for their turn at the swab collection facility set up close to the Assam-West Bengal border | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
Health workers taking swab tests from one of the migrant labourers at a swab collection facility near the Assam-West Bengal border. | Photo: Angana Chakrabarti | ThePrint
Health workers taking swab tests of a migrant labourer | Photo: Angana Chakrabarti | ThePrint
A mass quarantine centre has been setup just across the swab collecting facility. The returnees coming to Assam's Dhubri district through the West Bengal border are quarantined here for seven days. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
A mass quarantine centre has been set up just across the swab collection facility. According to protocol, the returnees coming to Assam’s Dhubri district have to stay at the centre for seven days | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
In May, the Dhubri district administration had setup about 20 quarantine centres around the area to accommodate the large number of returnees. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
In May, the Dhubri district administration had set up about 110 quarantine centres to accommodate the large number of returnees | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
A policeman guards the quarantine facility near the Assam-West Bengal border at Chagolia gate. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
A policeman guards a quarantine facility in Chagolia | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
The State Fire Service Organisation Assam routinely sanitise the screening area at the Chagolia interstate border gate. | Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint
The State Fire Service Organisation in Assam routinely sanitises the screening area at the Chagolia checkpoint| Photo: Yimkumla Longkumer | ThePrint

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