Koch: A total of 386 Keralite domestic workers are languishing in four deportation centres in Saudi Arabia, it is learnt. An RTI reply reveals that Saudi Arabia has refused to reveal the identities of the detainees terming the information as ‘sensitive.’
Interestingly, even after repeated requests, Indian authorities have refused to intervene in the matter to bring the detainees back.
As per the latest RTI reply from the embassy of India, Riyadh, there are 386 detainees in the shelter or deportation centres.
Mr P.K. Agrawal, central public information officer of Indian embassy, handed over the information to Mr Mahesh Vijayan, a Kochi- based techie, who is also an RTI activist, on June 4.
At present, there are 278 persons in Shumaisy (Riyadh), central province, 70 in Dammam, 30 in Al-Hasa (Hofuf) both in eastern province and 16 in Riyadh housemaid welfare centre.
It was alleged that the authorities had refused to allow the detainees to contact their families in India. The embassy authorities also replied that the information related to the detainees could not be revealed as the same was considered as sensitive information.
Kerala High Court had recently criticised the External Affairs Ministry for not keeping a tab on the affairs of non-residential Keralites while considering the sensational Sharjah sex racket case.
Several cases are registered in Kerala relating to human trafficking and domestic workers falling prey to the traps of travel agencies.
Pursuant to the reply, Mr Mahesh and a fellow activist wrote to the Non-Resident Keralites Affairs (NORKA ROOTS) and Minister K.C. Joseph dealing with NORKA, but no action was taken, says Mr Mahesh.