7,700 Indian workers affected in Saudi Arabia: MEA

New Delhi, Aug 2 (IANS) In all, 7,700 Indian workers of four companies in Saudi Arabia, affected by financial crisis, have been given shelter in 20 camps, External Affairs Ministry spokesman Vikas Swarup said on Tuesday.

Giving a breakup of the figures, Swarup said 4,072 workers belonging to construction company Saudi Oger in Riyadh are in 10 camps: nine in Riyadh and one in Damman.

He said 1,457 workers belonging to SAAD Group, Dammam, are in two camps in Dammam; five workers belonging to Shifa Sanaya, Riyadh, are in one camp; 13 workers belonging to Taiya Contracting, Riyadh, are in one camp.

“In addition, there are 2,153 Indian workers belonging to Saudi Oger in six camps in Jeddah all of whom have been provided food by the Indian consulate,” Swarup said.

“So there are a total of 7,700 affected Indian workers in 20 camps.”

The Indian embassy in Riyadh convened a meeting of community social workers and volunteers on Monday, wherein the Ambassador apprised them of the ongoing problems faced by the Indian workers and sought the help of the community in collecting information about the affected workers from different companies in the Kingdom, Swarup said.

Each of the community workers were given a form to be filled in with the requisite information to be submitted to the embassy.

“Embassy teams visited six camps yesterday (Monday) in Riyadh,” Swarup said.

He said the information about each worker, about his total service, pending salary, desire to exit or to continue or to transfer to other companies was being collected separately.

“A team of the embassy is separately working in Dammam. This team yesterday met the labour officials to complete procedures related to the protection of legal dues of the workers, once they depart on final exit,” Swarup said, adding that the team was also in touch with the affected workers in the region.

He said Minister of State for External Affairs V.K. Singh would be leaving for Jeddah on Tuesday night via Dubai.

“His on-ground assessment will determine future course of action,” Swarup said.



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