35pc Saudi returnees physically, sexually abused by their employers

Staff Correspondent . Dhaka | Update:

As many as 110 women domestic helps return home following physical and sexual abuses by their employees in Saudi. File photoThirty-five per cent of the female domestic helps who recently returned home from Saudi Arabia were either physically tortured or sexually abused by their employers, says a report by the Bangladesh government.

Earlier on 26 August, 110 Bangladeshi house helps working in Saudi Arabia came back home for various reasons.

Of them, as many as 44 per cent were not given wages regularly, the parliamentary standing committee on expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment ministry said in a report on Thursday.

The ministry has identified 11 causes behind sudden return of the expatriate workers after talking to them.

Some of the women referred more than one causes behind their returning home while some said they were sexually abused as well as deprived of regular wages.

According to the ministry report, 38 female out of 110 were simultaneously physically and sexually abused. And 48 women were not given wages regularly.

Apart from the aforementioned causes, some women said they were not even provided with enough meal.

Other causes include job without leave, forced to work at more than one houses, sold to other owner, illness, family affair (one woman) and so on.

The report mentioned 34 women who retuned just one month into their employment.

In the meeting, the expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment ministry said an ‘expatriate welfare wing’ has been opened at 29 missions in 26 countries to ensure welfare to Bangladeshis abroad.

Along with that Bangladesh Overseas Employment and Services Limited (BOESL) has initiated to send workers to Japan and to other Middle Eastern countries in a bid to find new market.

Committee president Anisul Islam Mahmud presided over the meeting. Expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment minister Imran Ahmad among others was present at the meeting.

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