Kathmandu, November 22
The International Relations and Labour Committee of the Legislature-Parliament today lifted two-and-a-half months’ old ban on sending security guards to foreign destinations.
However, the manpower firms facing court cases or complaints before the parliamentary panel, police or Department of Foreign Employment, will not be able to send security guards to labour destinations till the cases are settled.
The parliamentary panel has been conducting its investigation on the basis of complaints filed before it and other agencies to prepare its report, said Prabhu Shah, chairperson of the committee.
“The entire pre-approval process of security guards from the Department of Foreign Employment had been halted during the investigation process, but now only the companies facing investigation have been barred from initiating the process.”
According to Min Bahadur Bishwokarma, convener of the subcommittee formed by the parliamentary panel, complaints have been lodged against 142 manpower companies out of 734 firms in operation and court cases have been registered against 32 manpower agencies.
Most of the manpower firms are accused of charging higher amount than allowed by the government and a few others are related to violation of contract of workers, according to Bishwokarma.
The subcommittee was supposed to submit its report last month but due to complexity of the issue, the sub-committee will require one more month before it submits its final report, said Bishwokarma.
“The house panel report will suggest measures that the government should adopt to control ill-practices plaguing the foreign employment sector.”
The parliamentary panel on September 5 had banned sending security guards from the country, as one manpower agency named SRS Overseas Pvt Ltd was found swindling money from foreign job aspirants.
Following a probe by DoFE based on a complaint filed by a person who had been sent to work as a security guard in the United Arab Emirates, the company had refunded Rs 8 lakh to the petitioner.
Foreign job-seekers, especially those seeking to work as security guards, are overcharged by the manpower firms.
The government has barred manpower firms from charging more than Rs 10,000 per person for sending workers to Malaysia and six Gulf nations — Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Oman — under the ‘Free Visa, Free Ticket’ provision.
A version of this article appears in print on November 23, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.