Ordeal ends as Indian workers say final goodbye to UAE

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Ordeal ends as Indian workers say final goodbye to UAE

Dubai - They have been slapped with a permanent ban, but they are not unhappy.


Ashwani Kumar

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Published: Tue 27 Sep 2016, 2:19 PM

Last updated: Wed 28 Sep 2016, 9:15 AM

Workers of Mussafah 43 labour accommodation were all smiles as they finally exited the country from the Dubai International Airport late Sunday night.

All of them have been slapped with a permanent ban, but it makes little difference to them as none of them want to return to the country after being unpaid for months and going through a nightmarish time.

Now only one person -- whose file went missing from the CID office -- is left back in the UAE.
Also read: Unpaid Indian workers fight for survival in UAE labour camp

Nand Kishor Prasad, Dilip Singh and Ravinder Kumar Shah left on the 11.40 pm Air India flight to Mumbai. and Udit Narayan Gupta hopes to leave in another 10 days.

Prasad said: "We are kings back home as we are working in the UAE but they don't know that we have no clothes."

How things unfolded

"Following Khaleej Times report we did get lots of food supplies and assurances but no one was willing to pay the huge visa fine that was on our head. We were asked to sign few papers between November 2015 and February. It's only now we realised those were regarding our visa and contract cancellation and the company had no liability. So, instead of being out there with a begging bowl for our visa delay fine, we went to CID office and surrendered. They took our retina scan so that we can't return. This is fine and not the end of the world for us," Prasad said.
Also read: Indian, Pakistani workers' passports returned after KT video goes viral

Earlier this month, another worker, Nagendra Singh, went to the CID office in Dubai. "He was in jail for 10 days and left the country with a ban," Ravinder said. "Nagendra arranged the amount for visa delay fine through his brother and other well-wishers."

With a tried and tested result, the trio went and finally was given an 'Outpass Extension'.

"My daughter didn't believe when I said I will reach home on Monday. She said I was lying. I had given her similar assurances for last many months," Dilip said.

Prasad said that systems in place for labourers are world-class but only for those who know how it worked. "We ran from Mussafah to Indian Embassy to labour courts and finally to CID office. Hopefully, there will be system in place for illiterates like us as it's easy to fool us and make us sign fake papers. The rules and regulations, if they are followed, are the best in the world. But most of them favour the companies and not the poor."
Also read: Mussafah workers get job offers; Dh7,200 Embassy aid

Reflecting back on few names who helped, Prasad said: "We did receive good help from Indian Embassy, Dubai Consulate officials and also few well-wishers. I have a list of people to thank." He indeed had a list of people and their phone number. "I have called each and everyone to say 'Thank You'."

Dilip added: "The company told us they will pay our salary together. After being hungry for weeks if you are given the food together, it won't serve the purpose."

Another worker Brijeesh Tiwari has opted to stay back. His new company has paid his visa dues of Dh6,700, which will be deducted from his salary on monthly basis.

For the rest of them, they came penniless and leave the same way.

"This journey has taught us many lessons. We have no salary and the most problems but now we know how to fight and survive. And we don't trust anyone anymore," Prasad added.

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