Following Saudi Arabia, Kuwait too is considering providing amnesty to those illegal expatriate workers facing threats of arrest, penalty and deportation, till August 31.
Talking to The Hindu here on Saturday, Minister of State for External Affairs E. Ahamed, who met recently Kuwait Deputy Prime Minister and in-charge Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khalid al-Hamad Al-Sabah there, said they discussed about the fate of Indian expatriates, who were in Kuwait either without valid documents or had violated work conditions.
After Mr. Ahamed sought amnesty for them, the Kuwait deputy Prime Minister assured the Minister his plea would be considered and a decision taken soon.
“The amnesty, which is likely to be announced soon, will provide relief to those Indians who have overstayed there without proper worker permit to return to homeland without facing arrest, penalty and deportation,” Mr. Ahamed said adding that there were at least 7 lakh Indians staying/working in Kuwait.
Earlier, there were reports that hundreds of Indian expatriates employed in Kuwait on domestic and labour visas were arrested on charges of violating visa norms, put in the special jails and later deported.
The worst affected were immigrants working in different sectors after having reached Kuwait on domestic visas. Hundreds of domestic visa-holders such as drivers, gardeners, male nurses, and cooks are working in other sectors such as supermarkets, shops, small industries and construction sites.
It is easier to get a domestic visa than a work visa for Kuwait. Moreover, the domestic visa comes cheaper (it is around 500 Kuwait Dinar) than the work visa, which is three times more expensive. Currently one KD is equal to around Rs.210.
The amnesty, which is likely to be announced soon, will provide relief to those Indians who have overstayed without proper worker permit to return to their homeland.
Minister of State for External Affairs