A petition was filed before the Supreme Court to direct authorities to rescue and help the Indian citizens stranded in Gulf countries.
The petition was filed by Advocate Jose Abraham on behalf Pravasi Legal Cell which is a migrant welfare society. The please states “around 9 million Indians are at present employed in countries in the Gulf, a vast majority of who are involved in low-skilled labour, who are going through challenging times and are struggling to meet even their basic needs in dire jobless situation arising out of the COVID pandemic”[i]. The plea also states as there is a rapid rise in number of cases infected with the virus, the number of migrant workers who are infected with the virus is yet to be estimated. The Government of Qatar has said that majority of the persons infected with the virus are migrants. Qatar Government has also imposed a strict lockdown to the region pertaining to migrant workers and turned it into something close to an overcrowded prison, in this aspect the petition seeks to rescue the workers from the overcrowded place which no basic treatment for the people who are infected. In few areas the migrant workers were asked to work during the lockdown, but the respective national counterparts were given a paid quarantine leave.
The prayer sought by the petitioner is as follows
1. To make necessary arrangement to rescue the migrant workers who are struck in the gulf countries and bring them back to India.
2. To take appropriate measures that the people infected with the virus are provided with the basic sanitation, food and proper shelter.
3. Appropriate actions to provide free medical assistance to the migrant workers in need.
4. To prepare a financial scheme and provide financial support to the families of the migrant labour, who are jobless due to coronavirus.
1. The petition was filed by Advocate Jose Abraham on behalf Pravasi Legal Cell.
2. Pravasi Legal Cell is a migrant welfare society.
3. The plea states nearly 9 million Indians are currently employed in Gulf Countries, majority of who are involved in low-skilled labour. The petition requests to provide assistance to who are going through challenging times also might be jobless or is infected with the virus.
4. The migrant workers were locked down in their accommodations, which is overcrowded. The locked area comprises of both infected and non-infected, without providing any basic amenities or sanitation.
The Indian citizens who were working in the Gulf Countries were stranded, they are not being provided with any basic amenities like food, sanitation and shelter. Many migrant workers in Qatar were locked in their accommodations, and many persons were stuffed into these accommodations which made the premises overcrowded. The migrant workers in Saudi were asked to come to work during the lockdown, while their Saudi counterparts were provided with paid quarantine leave. The petition requests the court to take necessary actions to rescue the migrant workers in the Gulf Countries and provide the financial assistance to the families of the migrant workers who lost their jobs.
Edited by J. Madonna Jephi
Approved & Published – Sakshi Raje
[i] Radhika Roy, Plea In SC Seeks To Rescue And Bring Indian Migrants Stranded In Gulf Countries Without Getting Proper Treatment For COVID19 [Read Petition] Live Law (2020), https://www.livelaw.in/top-stories/plea-in-sc-seeks-to-rescue-and-bring-indian-migrants-stranded-in-gulf-countries-without-getting-proper-treatment-for-covid19-read-petition-155058 (last visited Apr 11, 2020).