"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." - Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Over 800 Nepali migrants in jails abroad, at least 27 on death row

Nepali migrants
Blood money can save 17 of the 27 facing death sentence

More than 800 Nepali migrants are serving jail term in their job destination countries, mostly in the Gulf countries and Malaysia.

In addition to that at least 27 Nepali workers are facing death sentence in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar. However, most of them can skip their execution if they pay 'blood money', according to an official report.

As per the Islamic Sharia law, blood money is the money paid by a murderer or his/her family to the family or kin of the victims generally to get clemency from death penalty.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Labour and Employment today jointly presented the details of the report in front of Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, who earlier directed both the ministries to swiftly work for safety and welfare of migrant workers.

Deputy PM and Home Minister Bimalendra Nidhi, Deputy PM and Finance Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara, Foreign Minister Prakash Sharan Mahat, Labour Minister Surya Man Gurung and Information and Communications Minister Surendra Kumar Karki and secretaries of their respective ministries were also present.

According to a report received by The Himalayan Times, at least 819 Nepalis are doing in time in 8 Gulf countries, Middle East and Malaysia. These include an alarming number of 427 in Saudi Arabia, followed by Malaysia (217), UAE (100), Qatar (44), Kuwait (26), Bahrain (3) and 1 each in Egypt and Oman.

Charges against them include heinous crimes like murder and manslaughter to minor offences, such as traffic violations, over stay and peeing at roadside.

They face anything from capital punishment to 3 months' of jail term, officials said. Over 2.5 million Nepali citizens are said to be working in these 8 nations.

Among the Nepalis on death row, 24 are facing [execution] in Saudi Arabia, 2 in UAE and 1 in Qatar. "At least 17 workers who are on death row in Saudi can skip execution if they pay victims' kin blood money,'" reads the report.

At least 23 Nepalis are undergoing treatment after getting seriously injured in the course of their job. Most of them (14) were wounded while working in Qatar, where a large number of Nepalis are involved in construction sector for the preparation to host the 2022 World Cup.

After witnessing the presentation made by MoFA Joint Secretaries Deepak Adhikari and Ganesh Dhakal, Prime Minister Dahal directed both the ministries to work in tandem towards ensuring safety and security of Nepali workers in the Gulf, Malaysia and in other states.

He directed MoFA and MoLE to come up with a plan of action to make foreign employment more respectable and safe, stated the PM's Secretariat.

The PM also directed the concerned agencies to make necessary changes in the Foreign Employment Act to ensure swift response in case of emergency involving Nepali migrant, according to Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Bharat Raj Paudyal.

Source: The Himalayan Times, August 30, 2016

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