Uttar Pradesh leads in terms of number of emigrants to Gulf
The Ministry is now working on skill imparting programmes for the blue-collared workers heading to Gulf countries to avoid their exploitation.
Published: 09th January 2017 04:51 PM | Last Updated: 09th January 2017 04:51 PM | A+A A-
BENGALURU: The migration from India to Gulf countries has a geographical spread no with the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar have beaten Kerala in sending the most number of migrants to the Gulf Countries, as the numbers of emigrants from India registered 24 percent hike between 2013-15.
Joint Secretary (Gulf) Mridul Kumar revealed this during a session on Emigration Check Required (ECR) Countries, which includes Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman and Bahrain. More people coming to Gulf are from North and West of India.
“There are 8.5 million members in ECR countries. The last 2 years have seen a 24 percent increase in Indian Emigrants and 90 percent of them have gone to the Gulf countries,” Kumar said. The labour conditions of Indian workers in the Gulf countries have been grabbing headline with nearly 15,000 Indian workers being left in lurch as the Saudi Arabian firm folded up.
The Ministry is now working on skill imparting programmes for the blue-collared workers heading to Gulf countries to avoid their exploitation. They have already started Indian Workers Resource Centre in Dubai and Sharjah. In India as well these centres have been opened in Gurgaon (in National Capital Region) along with four other cities. MEA plans to open more centres in Jeddah and Riyadh as well.
“Now, we have large number of emigrants from the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Punjab, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu; and not only from Kerala,” Kumar added. These emigrants are important for the Indian economy as they form 40 percent of the remittances sent to India. But the working conditions are tough with a restrictive visa-sponsorship system known as kafala in place. Under this migrant workers work with only a single employer for their stay, cannot change job or leave the country without permission from the employer.
Keeping this in mind, MEA has urged the states in North India to set up institutions on the lines of Norka in Kerala that assist emigrants. The Ministry is also creating Model Work Contracts for these emigrants and encouraging them to go through e-migration route.