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Odia Plumber in Iraq Jail despite End of Term

Published: 23rd July 2014 08:31 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd July 2014 08:31 AM   |  A+A-

KENDRAPARA:The family members of an Odia plumber from Kendrapara, who is lodged in a jail in Iraq for overstaying his visa, have sought the intervention of the State and Central governments for his release.

Sarban Kumar Sahoo (28), a plumber of Manapada village under Rajnagar block in Kendrapara district was arrested in January on the charges of staying in Iraq even after the expiry of his visa. The trial court sentenced him to six-month imprisonment. Though his jail term has expired, Sarban continues to be behind bars, family sources said.

Sarban had gone to Iraq on September 25, 2012 to work as a plumber in a construction company for two years. A Mumbai-based employment agency, which sent him to Iraq,  got him a three-month tourist visa instead of a work permit. Though the visa expired, he continued to work there. When the matter came to the notice of the immigration officials there, Sarban was arrested from near Baghdad in January and is now in jail at Hillah, about 100 km from Baghdad, said Bharati, Sarban’s younger sister.

“We came to know about the plight of my brother from another plumber of the district who managed to return from the war-ravaged country recently,” added Bharati. 

“My brother was also cheated of `60,000 by  the employment agency in Mumbai which forged job contract documents to send him  to Iraq,” alleged Bharati. On Monday, Sarban’s mother and sister met Collector Pramod Kumar Das.

The district administration apprised the Labour Commissioner about the plight of Sarban on Monday, said Das. The State Government has also contacted the External Affairs Ministry and sought its intervention.



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