Saudi Arabia has zero tolerance for violation of workers’ rights: Embassy

New Delhi: Saudi Arabia has “zero tolerance” for transgression of a worker’s rights and human trafficking, and authorities there will investigate the details of an “alleged incident”, as reported in the Indian media, about an Indian automobile engineer being “sold” to a Saudi national and being treated as a “slave”.

A Saudi embassy statement said in response to media reports that Indian national Jayanta Biswas, from Kolkata, went to Saudi Arabia on a tourist visa, after he was conned by agents in New Delhi, only to find he had been “sold” to a Saudi national to work in his camel farm. If this incident was found true, “the alleged violator would face proper and necessary legal action” with “full force of the law”.

The statement went on to say: “The Kingdom has strict laws against human trafficking. There is a special department in the Ministry of Labour to deal with crimes of human trafficking. The government has zero tolerance for any transgression of a worker’s rights.

“(Saudi Arabian) authorities when provided with valid information will investigate the details of the alleged incident… If found true, the alleged violator would face proper and necessary legal action,” the statement said.

The Embassy also welcomed efforts by Indian authorities to curb such illegal activities in a bid to stop exploitation or misleading employment seekers going Saudi Arabia.

Nearly three million Indians, a large number of them professionals like engineers, doctors and IT experts, live and work in Saudi Arabia, the embassy said.

“They are an important pillar of the friendship that our two countries enjoy. Some isolated incidents of abuse or mistreatment should not be seen as the norm and should not be generalised to portray a country or society,” the statement added.