In Jammu's Freezing Winter, Migrants Fight For Survival

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This year's extreme cold in Jammu has caught migrant labourers off-guard.


Jammu:  With the minimum temperature settling at just half a degree Celsius above the freezing point, Jammu on Sunday night was coldest since 1945.

Braving the bitter winter chill are hundreds of poor artisans and labourers from Uttar Pradesh who migrated to Jammu in search of work and are finding themselves unprepared for the bitter cold

With the mercury dipping to zero at night and with no roof over the head the battle for survival is harsh.

"It is extremely cold this year, we live in small huts, it is very difficult for children to live in these conditions," said Chattur Das, a labour from Uttar Pradesh.
 

Munna, who lives in the colony of migrants in Narwal, on the outskirts of Jammu, is an epilepsy patient and as the temperature dips further, his condition deteriorates. His only solace are fellow slum dwellers who chip in to help him.

"It is bitterly cold and I could not go to work today, the village head has given me some wood to burn in the night to keep warm," said Munna.

Every year, hundreds of artisans and labourers migrate to Jammu in the winter months hoping to find jobs in the buzzing winter capital of the state. This year's extreme cold though has caught them off-guard.

They can only hope that the weather gods show some mercy and the harsh winter spell finally comes to an end.


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