There was a silent prayer for peace, happiness and security on every lip as sun dawned on the first day of 2006. For scores of faceless poor workers like construction labourers, taxi drivers, cooks, cleaners and butchers,...

By Anjana Sankar (Staff Reporter)

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Published: Mon 2 Jan 2006, 12:35 PM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 4:32 PM

for whom the new years eve passed quietly, the new year wish-list was mostly restricted to a desire for decent existence in the host country.

When City Times cornered a few unassuming lot, receiving regular salaries, finding a better paid job, building a small house back home for ailing parents, enrolling children in schools were among the much expressed aspirations for 2006.

For 45-year-old Bhundu, construction worker from Rajasthan, the new year is all about getting his salaries on time. "We are poor people who lead a hand to mouth existence. All I am worried today is about receiving my salary for the month, which I have not received yet," said a worried Bhundu.

Bhundu has been working in the UAE for more than 20 years and is now anxious about the day when he will have to leave. "I have not saved enough for a secure future and want to keep apart as much as I can this year," he sighed.

Randhir Singh, another labourer from Punjab, said he hoped to build a small house this year so that his ailing parents can lead a peaceful life in the evening of their lives. "I could not save enough for a house but will try harder to save more to fulfill the dream," enthused Singh.

Omar Abdullah Aziz, working as a butcher in a supermarket, is full of hope in 2006 and is eagerly awaiting the arrival of his second bundle of joy. "I lost my child in 2004 to an accident back home. My wife delivered a baby last year and I was the happiest man alive. My second child is due early this year, and all my dreams are centered around my family. I hope to renovate my existing home so that my children can live with more comforts," noted Omar from Egypt.

The education of her two kids and a better job tops the priority for Joahna, a salesgirl from Phillipines. "My children back home are growing up and it is time to put them in schools. Though I have not been able to bring them here, I am keen on giving them a decent education. Financially speaking, 2005 did not fare well for me but I hope to save better this year."

Mathunny Daniel, a security man from Kerala, has a balanced outlook about life and thinks that desires will cause misery. "There are many things one can wish for but that need not materialise. I am a man of meagre means and do not nurture any great ambitions. I want some basic happiness in life for my family. I have built a house and want to spend time with my kids and wife as much as possible," said Daniel. According to him, life is getting tougher each passing day, and hence wants to save a better part of his salary.

Abdul Razak, who works as a cook, expressed hope that he will be able to build a house in 2006. "Last year was not very bad as I did manage to earn by doing part time jobs like cleaning cars, cooking for families etc. My sole aim, every year, is to earn and save for my family back home. And they are praying for my welfare because if I do well, they will also do well," he said.

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