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Wednesday, October 3, 2018 11:07:24 PM
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Manpower export must be free of corruption network

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AGENTS in Malaysia have swindled a huge sum of money from thousands of Bangladeshi workers, who over the last two years, had applied to regularize their immigration status. News media reported that the exploitation of workers began after Malaysia declared a rehiring programme in February 2016 and appointed three private companies for processing documents of irregular foreign workers, including Bangladeshis. The companies in turn subcontracted the work to hundreds of Malaysian agents who made a link with undocumented migrants where manipulation, bribery and even cheating took place on a massive scale.
As per the regulation, including insurance, medical test and levy, the official fee  totalled  RM 3900 but the agents collected RM 6000 to 10000 from each for registration, collecting fingerprints, medical tests and final submission to the Immigration Department. In many cases the migrants even had to bribe the employers for acquiring papers that showed they were hiring the foreign workers.
Of some 10 lakh Bangladeshis working in Malaysia, half were undocumented, and almost all of the five lakh had applied for regularisation but did not get it. Even if the minimum amount of RM 6,000 is considered, the five lakh Bangladeshis have paid RM 300 crore, which is more than Tk 6,077 crore.
Among those who applied for regularisation less than 20 percent do not have work permits. They pay so much of their hard-earned money but are still living in a limbo that entangled them in detention and risks of deportation. It is apprehended that over 30,000 foreign workers have been detained since January and around 6,000 of them are Bangladeshis.
It's a common scenario that Bangladeshi migrant workers face various troubles due to lack of government pragmatic policy though they are the main source of our remittances.  We do urge the government to take proper initiatives so that the manpower exports to the Southeast Asian countries, including Malaysia, would be easy and corruption free.

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