SRIKAKULAM: Several Indian workers stranded and allegedly ill-treated by their employer in Bahrain on Tuesday expressed their wish to return home at the earliest, even as the Indian Embassy in the Kingdom intervened and said the matter “has been resolved.”
Around 2,000 workers from north coastal Andhra Pradesh, particularly Srikakulam, were among thousands of Indians stranded in Bahrain. The Embassy’s intervention came after Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy raised the matter with S Jaishankar, the Minister for External Affairs.
The workers were taken from India, promising employment at Nasser S. Al Hajri Corporation (NSH) Bahrain, a sub-contractor of Bahrain Petroleum Company (BAPCO). They were allegedly ill-treated and denied the promised proper food and accommodation. When questioned, they were reportedly manhandled by the company’s security personnel, which TNIE reported on Monday.
The Embassy, in a communique, said, “we have been closely following the developments at the NSH camp and are monitoring the situation. Our Embassy representatives are in constant touch with both the workers and the management of the company through the Government of Bahrain authorities, who have been facilitating dialogue between the two parties.’’
The communication, tweeted by YSRC MP Vijayasai Reddy, further said “the matter has been resolved to the satisfaction of both sides.”Meanwhile, it was learnt that NSH Bahrain recently hired between 5,000-6,000 workers from India and Nepal (about 4,000 Indians), for BAPCO’s modernisation programme. Ravi Pillai, an NRI investor in Bahrain, is the majority shareholder of the company.
Sources said the Bahraini authorities, along with Embassy representatives, visited the camp and met the representatives of the management and labourers.The Supreme Council of Environment of Bahrain checked the quality of air in the camp and certified the air safe for the accommodation purpose (some workers had said toxic gas was released in the area).
During the talks, some workers agreed to continue with the firm. But around 600-700 workers expressed their wish to return home. The company management reportedly assured to meet their genuine demands and promised to send back those who wishing to return, at the earliest.