Govt to bring illegal workers back from Malaysia: Minister
Bangladesh mission to extend supports to the undocumented labourersNew Age Online
Expatriates’ welfare and overseas employment Khandker Mosharraf Hossain on Tuesday said that the government would take steps to bring the undocumented and detained Bangladeshi workers back home if they were not convicted in Malaysia.
Talking to the reporters at his office on Tuesday, he said the government is communicating with the Malaysian government to urge them not to prosecute the detained Bangladeshi workers.
Several hundred of Bangladeshi workers among other nationals were detained in Malaysia in the last two days as per of their crackdown on illegal foreign workers.
Replying to a question, Mosharraf said the workers would have to pay their own airfare.
As the workers were employed there for 5-6 years, they were able to arrange their own airfare, he said.
Before beginning the crackdown on undocumented workers, the Malaysian government had given sufficient time for the labourers to get legalised, the minister said.
He said the Bangladesh government had distributed leaflets and broadcast news asking the undocumented labour force to turn legal.
The government several times requested the workers to take documents from Bangladesh high Commission in Kuala Lumpur, he said.
‘My impression was that all of the workers have made themselves legal,’ the Minister said.
The minister, however, held some 10-15 Bangladeshi recruiting agencies responsible for not getting the workers legalised in Malaysia.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh high commissioner in Kuala Lumpur AKM Atiqur Rahman told New Age over phone on Tuesday that if the detained workers or their employers fail to produce valid documents, the workers would be deported. He said despite repeated calls some workers were unwilling to get registered with the high commission to turn lawful labourers.
He said the mission would extend all possible cooperation including free legal aid to set the detained workers released.
Asked if the mission can arrange any fund to buy tickets for the deported workers, Atiqur said he believes that the workers have necessary money to buy their own tickets to fly home back.
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