VISAKHAPATNAM: Four youths from Butchayyapeta mandal in the district, who had gone to Malaysia nine months ago for contract jobs, have been languishing in a room without salary and food. The youths -- Marisa Venku Naidu, Marisa Mahesh, Marisa Srinivasa Rao and Marisa Girish -- all from Rajam village, have been moving heaven and earth to return home. All the four men are in their early 20s.
Speaking to TNIE from Malaysia, Venku Naidu said they were lured by an agent with a promise of providing them employment. The agent allegedly collected `60,000 each from the youths and sent them to Malaysia last September on a tourist visa.
Problems started for them after two months when their local agent Dhana Sekhar refused to pay them salary and took away their passports, Venku said.
Their problems have only aggravated in the last three months as they have no work and money to buy food.
They have been barely surviving on a little bit of money being sent to them by their poor families from Rajam. According to Venku, they hardly get a square meal a day and some times they eat chillies and drink water to suppress gnawing hunger. A distraught Venku told TNIE that they were looking for help to get out of their abject condition.
Venku and their three friends are not alone facing terrible conditions in a foreign country. Holed up in a service apartment room at Batu Caves, there are nine more persons, including four from Kerala, according to Venku.
He said the agent had threatened them and even thrashed them when they asked him to send them back home.
He tore the passports of three of them, he said. They cannot even move out of their rooms for fear of being caught by Malaysia police.Venku said his attempt to come back to India was thwarted when he was caught by police, who let him off after taking away `6,000 from him.
On another occasion, his friend Girish was caught by police when he went out to buy food and he was let off only after he paid `2,000 to them.He said the agent had made false promise to make arrangements for their return journey. He and other members are praying to god for help from the Indian Embassy.
Their parents, who are tenant farmers and farm hands, had great hopes of their children earning some money in Malaysia before returning to the village. However, their dreams are shattered, Nani, a cousin of Venku, said. Venku’s father Koteswara Rao is a worried man as both his sons are languishing in Malaysia.
He said he thought his sons, who passed class X, would make some money for their future. Girish’s mother stays alone in the village and is anxiously waiting for her son’s return.
Nani said he had brought the plight of the Rajam youths to the notice of YSRC leader Gudivada Amarnath, who in turn referred their case to party MP Vijayasai Reddy.Responding to their pleas, Vijayasai Reddy wrote a letter to Union Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj with the details of the four youths stranded in Buta Caves in Selangor in Malaysia. The MP urged the Union minister to help the youths return home.