Nepal | June 03, 2020

Govt failed to protect migrant workers’ rights: AI report

Himalayan News Service
Share Now:

Kathmandu, February 22

The Government of Nepal has failed to deliver effective protection for migrant workers and end the culture of impunity for unlawful and criminal recruitment practices, says Amnesty International Report 2017-18.

According to the report punished today, migrant workers were systematically subjected to unlawful and criminal conduct by recruitment businesses and agents. Recruiters routinely charged migrant workers illegal and excessive fees; deceived them about the terms and conditions of their work abroad; and manipulated their consent to overseas work through the accumulation of recruitment debts.

“Some recruiters were directly involved in labour trafficking, which is punishable under Nepal’s Human Trafficking and Transportation (Control) Act. Migrants trapped in forced-labour situations abroad faced extreme difficulty in accessing support from Nepalese embassies to return home. Recruiters rarely provided repatriation assistance to workers when they encountered problems abroad despite their obligations under the Foreign Employment Act,” it warned.

The report said the authorities also failed to investigate – including through autopsies – the high number of migrant worker deaths during foreign employment. No improvements were made in the implementation of the government’s ‘Free visa, free ticket’ policy, which was intended to curtail recruitment charges by agencies.

“Although the government made repeated public commitments to reduce migration costs for workers and to protect them from incurring debt, it increased the burden on migrants by raising pre-departure costs. In July, the Foreign Employment Promotion Board increased the amount migrant workers were required to contribute to the government-administered welfare fund,” it said.

As per the report, fewer than 100 recruitment agencies were fined or referred to the Foreign Employment Tribunal for violations of foreign employment laws, even though more than 8,000 migrant workers filed cases against recruitment agents. The Foreign Employment Act stipulates that victims must file complaints with the Department of Foreign Employment and restricts police from actively investigating recruitment businesses.

“Recruitment businesses continued to use their political influence to prevent investigation, prosecution and redress for their routine exploitation of migrants,” the report said.

‘Excessive force used’

KATHMANDU: The AI report said security forces continued to use unnecessary or excessive force in response to protests in the Tarai, particularly over grievances relating to the constitution.

In March, five protesters were killed and 16 others injured when police used firearms to disperse Madhesi protesters in Saptari district. — HNS

A version of this article appears in print on February 23, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.

Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

Fear-triggered attack on healthcare worker in Doti

DHANGADHI: A healthcare worker carrying medical supplies to a health post has been attacked amid the fear of coronavirus transmission in Doti. According to health coordinator at Shikhar Municipality-9 Harish Shah, Auxiliary Health Worker (AHW) Ramesh Kunwar, stationed at Dankot Health Post in the Read More...

Quarantine facilities in Sudurpaschim crammed as returnees from India surge

DHANGADHI: The quarantine facilities across Sudurpaschim Province have become over-crowded due to the influx of incoming Nepali migrant workers from India. As recorded at the Administration Office in Kailali, approximately 2,000 to 5,000 migrant workers have been regularly entering the provin Read More...

Sancho not booked for Floyd protest, slogans being reviewed, says DFB

BERLIN: Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho was not booked for his protest against the death of American George Floyd by a policeman but because he removed his shirt during the game, the German Football Association (DFB) clarified on Monday. Sancho removed his shirt during a goal celebrat Read More...

18 discharged after recovering from coronavirus infection in Dharan

DHARAN: As many as eighteen persons have been discharged from Dharan-based BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences (BPKIHS) after recovering from COVID-19, on Tuesday. Following two back to back negative results, 17 men from Jhapa and one Dharan native woman were allowed to return home owing Read More...

Highlights: Nepal witnesses highest single-day spike in coronavirus cases

KATHMANDU: Nepal's Health Ministry, in its regular press briefing, shared the latest updates on coronavirus contagion from across the country, and the government’s response to the health crisis. As of today, 75,343 tests through Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) method and 116,345 Rapid Diagn Read More...

Anupam Kher reminisces Naam Shabana memories with throwback picture

KATHMANDU: Bollywood actor Anupam Kher has reminisced memories from Naam Shabana by sharing a throwback picture of the film's cast on his Instagram on June 2. In the photograph one can see the cast of the 2017 action-thriller — Kher along with Neeraj Pandey, Taapsee Pannu, Manoj Bajpayee, Read More...

45 patients discharged, Nepal's coronavirus recovery tally progresses to 266

KATHMANDU: Forty-five persons earlier diagnosed with coronavirus infection, admitted across various health care facilities have been discharged following recovery, confirmed The Ministry of Health and Population. A 54-year-old woman of Makwanpur, undergoing treatment at the Maharjgunj-based Tribh Read More...

India approves emergency use of remdesivir to treat COVID-19 patients

BENGALURU: India's government said on Tuesday it has approved Gilead Sciences Inc's antiviral drug remdesivir for emergency use for five doses in treating COVID-19 patients. Remdesivir, which is administered intravenously in hospital, is the first drug to show improvement in COVID-19 patients in Read More...