‘Saudi, UAE recorded most deaths of Indian workers’

Saudi Arabia, UAE are two countries recording highest number of Indian labourer deaths

July 22, 2022 10:29 pm | Updated 10:29 pm IST - NEW DELHI

An Indian labourer works at the construction site of a building in Riyadh. File.

An Indian labourer works at the construction site of a building in Riyadh. File. | Photo Credit: Reuters

Member countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have witnessed the largest number of deaths of Indian workers during 2019 to 2021 that included the pandemic season. In response to a question in Parliament, the Government on Friday laid down the numbers that revealed that the highest number of deaths of Indian labourers took place in the United Arab Emirates and the Saudi Arabia during this period.

The largest number of Indian labourers died in Saudi Arabia in 2020 when 3,753 workers perished. A year later, the numbers dropped to 2,328. Both the years were marked by the pandemic, which saw health and employment-related crises for the workers as apart from the pandemic.

A large number of companies had stopped operation creating difficult living conditions. However, it is not known how many of these workers might have succumbed to bad working conditions. The number of deaths of the labourers was at 2,353 in Saudi Arabia in 2019.

Similar numbers were seen in the UAE where in 2020, 2,454 Indian labourers died. The figure was 1,751 in 2019 and rose to 2,714 in 2021. Similarly Qatar, which is experiencing an influx of Indian labourers because of construction works related to the upcoming football World Cup, saw the highest number of deaths of Indian labourers at 420 in 2021. 385 Indian labourers died in Qatar in 2020 and 250 perished in 2019.

Bahrain saw the death of 352 Indian workers in 2021 and 303 and 211 deaths of the labourers in 2020 and '19. 1,201 Indian labourers died in Kuwait in 2021. This was preceded by the death of 1,279 Indians in 2020 and 707 Indians in 2019. 913 Indian labourers died in Oman in 2021, the highest in the last three years.

Among the European countries, Italy and Germany witnessed a large number of deaths of Indian labourers. In 2021, 304 Indian labourers died in Italy. This was the highest figure during 2019-'21. During 2019 to '21, 64, 84 and 103 Indian labourers respectively died in Germany.

In comparison, two Indian workers died in Afghanistan in 2021, eight in 2020 and one in 2019.

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