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Monday, January 29, 2018 11:29:07 PM
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Protect overseas jobseekers from fraudsters

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30th-Jan-2018       
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THEY used to publish fake job advertisements in newspapers assuring the jobseekers of processing their visa applications to land jobs in Hong Kong and realise a handsome amount. In some cases, they would send the jobseekers to the Dhaka Airport with air tickets for trips to Nepal and then switch off their mobile phones. After reaching the airport, the victims realised that they have been cheated.

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of police picked up two such fraudsters, including a private university student, from the capital on Thursday. Nazmul Hasan Sumon alias Mazharul and Tanvir Ahmed Jewel were arrested from Khilkhet and Dakkhin Khan areas, according to the report of a national daily.

Nazmul, a Southeast University student hailed from Rajbari's Goalundo and Tanvir from Babuganj in Barisal were arrested in a fraud case filed by Ziaul Islam and Hayat with Biman Bandar Police Station on November 14 last year. Around Tk 7 lakh was taken from them. Like Ziaul and Hayat, there are several victims.

There are many ways by which this can be stopped. Newspapers should carefully scrutinise advertisements before publishing those so that criminals cannot take any undue advantage to defraud innocent people. The jobseekers should also verify any related information from the prospective employers before entering any agreement with an organisation or an individual.

But, alas, no matter how vigilant the press is we can't escape one fact—the desperation of many of our economically deprived citizens to go abroad at any cost. This get-rich-quick mentality is what has led to many such cases of fraud. Many cases end up even worse—with people being held hostage, tortured for ransom, and in some cases, even killed. Studies have shown that it takes an average Bangladeshi worker about twice or more the amount of money to go abroad as it takes for others in the subcontinent. The mechanism for the search of jobs overseas can be made more efficient and transparent by requiring recruitment agencies to post information about jobs available on their websites. Likewise, for recruitments made by the government (for example within the framework of the G2G mechanism), information may be posted on the website of BMET.

There are many places to go for information now—we have many radios and TV channels which describe how to earn money from farming, weaving handlooms, and many other ways. Instead of looking for employment our citizens could, with the same amount of money, look for employment creation by starting businesses which create jobs.

Unfortunately our citizens are not deterred from trying for jobs abroad at any price. It is at the stage of job search that migrant workers face the highest probability being misled and exploited by agents and sub-agents, and hence, measures will be needed to protect them from such dangers.


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