Dreams of jobs abroad ended in a nightmare for 27 people from Madurai and Sivaganga as they were trapped in Uzbekistan as bonded labourers. The matter came to light when their relatives petitioned the Collectorate on Saturday.
According to them, agents at Okkur in Sivaganga had charged `75,000 each to get jobs as masons in Russia. In stead, they were sent to Uzbekistan as bonded labourers. On reaching Uzbekistan, they came to know that their visa was valid for 10 months.They were promised a salary USD 430 a month. Their employers were paying only half the sum, the petitioners claimed.
M Kumar, whose younger brother M Ganeshmurthy (32) was a victim, said, “The employers mentioned that they had bought each of the 27 victims for `72,000 ($ 1,500) and had spent $1 as their travelling expenses.”