Indian worker's body stuck in Abu Dhabi mortuary for 19 days
48-year-old from Indian state of Bihar, along with several others, has not been paid for past few months.
The body of an Indian worker has been stuck in the mortuary for 19 days and his company has not bothered to help.
Hari Shankar Singh had been working with Legend Project General Contracting LLC in Abu Dhabi for the last two years.
According to his friends at a Mussaffah labour accommodation, the 48-year-old from the Indian state of Bihar, along with several others have not been paid for the past few months.
"With no money in hand, Singh was tensed. He was unwell and wanted to return home. He asked for his passport from the company but it was denied. And on July 20 at about 10.10pm, he suffered a heart attack. We called the emergency services who said that he had died. Then the police and the CBI too came," Brijesh Tiwary, his colleague, told Khaleej Times.
"We informed the company but there was no response from their side. We are labourers and can't fight them. They have our passports, too."
The body of Hari Shankar has been kept at the Shaikh Khalifa Medical City mortuary since July 21.
"It will finally be send to his home early morning on Tuesday," Tiwary added.
Hari Shankar's son, who is working in Dubai, had a tough time getting the paperwork done to repatriate his father's body back to Siwan district of Bihar. Vysh Kumar will fly back with his father's body. He had come to the UAE with a lot of dream, but will go back penniless.
"His son came to Dubai last year and we are all helping him out in this difficult time," Tiwary said. "We approached the Indian embassy, which got in touch with the company. The embassy also got in touch with Kerala Muslim Cultural Centre's MM Nasar Kanhangad who helped out with the paperwork. And now the body can be flown back to his home state," he said.
Hari Shankar is survived by his wife and four children.
"We did provide all assistance. We have provided free air ticket and helped with the documentation process," said Dinesh Kumar, first secretary (Community Affairs) at the India Embassy. "Unless we get all paperwork - death certificate and others, from the local authorities, we can't issue the needed papers from our side."
Kumar added that in such cases the company or the sponsor should play an active role but in this particular case the company was not cooperating at all.
"We also took help from a community organisation," he added.
Until now, the company has not paid a dirham to help with the repatriation process and all efforts by this newspaper to contact the company have proven futile.
Confirming the developments, Nasar said: "Yes, this is a terrible incident. It was actually the Indian Embassy that approached me. Finally, the body will be flown by Air India flight to Mumbai and from there to Patna."
Cornered on the issue, the Abu Dhabi Company released a No Objection Certificate for the body to be flown out of the country.
Latest: The body was sent to India by Air India flight on Tuesday morning
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