In a two-pronged strategy to secure migrant workers, the Uttar Pradesh government has decided to set up a Migration Commission for the employment of such labourers in the state and made it clear that any state that wants them from UP has to seek its permission.

With over 23 lakh workers and migrants having returned to the state till Sunday, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has directed that a Migration Commission be set up, according to Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Awanish Awasthi.

Adityanath also directed officials that migrant workers be given insurance so that their life is secured, Awasthi said. The chief minister suggested that a scheme be launched to ensure their job security.

While addressing a webinar on Sunday, Yogi Adityanath said, “Other states will also need to seek permission from his government before engaging workers from UP”.

“If any state wants manpower, the state government will have to guarantee social security and insurance of the workers. Without our permission they will not be able to take our people,” he stated.

He said all migrants who have returned to the state were being registered and their skills were being mapped by the administration. Any state or entity interested in hiring them will need to take care of their social, legal and monetary rights.

Speaking about the challenges his administration had faced during this crisis, the Chief Minister said, “When I talk of Uttar Pradesh, then it is natural to say that it is the state with the highest population. We have faced several challenges during the lockdown. At the beginning, migrants and labourers started coming to the state. We deployed 16,000 buses and within 24 hours, they were brought back to their home districts and arrangements were made to screen them.”

Yogi Adityanath took a dig at the opposition leaders for the migrant crisis. “During the lockdown, if those who now raise slogans for the poor had honestly cared about workers, then migration could have been stopped. This did not happen. No facilities were given. At several places, electricity connections were cut, so people had to migrate.” he said.

Meanwhile, the new order has not gone down well with Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) chief Raj Thackeray, who hit at Yogi Adityanath, saying labourers will have to seek nod of the Maharashtra government if they wish to work here, a News18 report said.

Legal experts have opined that requiring government permission for employing people could face a legal challenge as the Constitution guarantees the freedom of movement and residence and employment of workers.

“Article 19 (1)(D) guarantees freedom to move freely, and 19(1)(e) the freedom to settled in any part of the country so the need for permission can be legally challenged,” said a senior lawyer.