Nepali lying in jail for 4 yrs for failure to pay 2.5 million as compensation

Yogendra Yogi

December 23, 2021


Nepali lying in jail for 4 yrs for failure to pay 2.5 million as compensation

Victim Damodar. (File photo)

DOHA: Many Nepalis are exposed to the extreme work condition due to their poverty. Raising a happy family with children getting timely education is a push-factor for foreign labors from Nepal.

However, their dreams get shattered when the workers suffer some accidents and they do not have someone to speak for them.

The dream of Damodar of Butwal Municipality-11, who arrived in Saudi Arabia for foreign employment, also shattered due to some bad accidents he had in foreign land. He reached there in a driver’s visa in July 2011.

Although the agent from Nepal sent him to Saudi on a driver’s visa, when he reached in Doha, he found out that he had been sent on a labor visa. Realizing that he had been a victim of a fraud, he requested his company to help him convert the visa into driver’s visa. The company asked for 2500 riyal and when he could not pay the money demanded by the company he fled from there.

“After fleeing the company, I worked illegally for a year in a place called Jubail,” he told Khabarhub, adding, my boss had promised to send me home in a year.

Unfortunately, within 10-15 days after he started working as a driver, he met with an accident. Damodar claimed that another vehicle collided against his vehicle. Another driver died in the accident.

Before he could recover well after the injury, his boss mounted pressure on him to join the work. The owner said that he should drive again as the case was not settled yet.

As I kept on demanding the due payment, the boss took me to the police. My boss and the police had a talk for about 40-50 minutes. After that the police came to me and announced that I have to go to jail as my boss does not work as my trustee anymore, Damodar narrated his story.

Damodar contacted the owner and requested him to facilitate his release. However, the boss, who promised to get him released in three months, did not help at all. Rather he was sent to jail.

The boss, who had been somehow sympathetic in the beginning, refused to continue support afterward.

Initially, when he went to the police station 5-6 times, the owner used to promise to help. But at last, he showed no mercy at Damodar. Damodar sought help from the Riyad based Nepali Embassy; however,  the embassy replied that it could not help him anymore.

One year after it, the court demanded 79,000 Saudi Riyals, or about 2.5 million Nepali rupees, as compensation for the vehicle.

Despite the jail authority’s promise to release him provided he paid the compensation, Damodar has to remain there due to poor economic status. He could not pay the compensation as it was too high for him and is still in Saudi Arabia.

He appealed to the Ministry of Labor, Department of Foreign Employment, Nepali Embassy in Riyad and other Nepalis living at home and abroad to provide financial assistance to the families who have been separated for 11 years and to create an environment for their safe return to Nepal.

Damodar notified that Mrs. Bhagwati Chhetri (1707010016780) can be contacted for help.