Naidu asks Centre to ensure safe return of 5,000 Telugu workers stranded in Kuwait

By Aiswarya Sriram  Published on  22 April 2020 1:29 PM GMT
Naidu asks Centre to ensure safe return of 5,000 Telugu workers stranded in Kuwait

Hyderabad: Former Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu has written to external affairs minister S. Jaishankar asking him to ensure the safety and livelihood of Telugu people in Kuwait after the Kuwait embassy declared amnesty for Indian nationals.

Many Gulf countries declare amnesty for people who are overstaying their visas. They will overlook the illegal stay and will declare a specific period when the nationals from other countries can be deported without any penalties.

Mr Naidu, in his letter, said around 5,000 Telugu-speaking workers will take benefit of the amnesty. Since the workers were coming from a COVID-affected country it is necessary to ensure they are free of the virus. “Firstly, it is essential that those people willing to return to India are COVID-free. Second, once they return to India, it is again essential to ensure that they are COVID-free and take necessary measures to isolate and provide treatment to them. Due to the lockdown, it is essential to ensure that each one reaches their home after their return to India," he said, adding the Central government must arrange proper transport facility to ferry them to their homes.

He also said that once the workers return to India the government will have to provide livelihood and rehabilitation for them and asked the Union minister to provide necessary skill training.

Meanwhile, a Kuwait-based activist, Shaheen Sayyed, who helps repatriate Indians, said, “A curfew has been imposed in many places in Kuwait. The government has extended the amnesty period for five days from 25 April to 30 April. As of now, the Indian embassy is providing Indians with emergency certificates for their return.”

She said there are around 40,000 Indians but it’s unsure if all of them will be able to take benefit of this amnesty period. “Neither the Indian embassy in Kuwait nor the Indian government has provided information on when and how these Indians will be evacuated. It is my humble request to the government to arrange flights so that they can return home.”

On 30 March, the Kuwait government had declared an amnesty and said it will also pay travel charges for people to go back to their countries.

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