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New novel puts spotlight on expat workers

Manama, June 7, 2014

An Indian surgeon based in Bahrain, has launched his debut novel, 'Algebra of Hope' which deals with the exploitation being faced by migrant workers in the Middle East.

Dr Ranjit Divakaran, a maxillofacial surgeon at the King Hamad University Hospital, wrote 'Algebra of Hope' while working in Saudi Arabia.

Talking to the Gulf Daily News, our sister publication, Dr Divakaran said he hoped to show the exploitation that many Indian workers in the Middle East face.

"I worked in Saudi Arabia for over eight years," he said.

"I was inspired to write the book while I was there and there are many Indians, who work in the Middle East struggle to send home money. There's a lot of exploitation - back home, the families exploit them and in the Middle East the employers exploit them," he remarked.

"Things have changed a lot in the last 10 to 15 years and have gotten better, but exploitation still prevails.

"Bahrain is better than Saudi Arabia in that sense," he added.

He explained that through his job as a surgeon, he interacted with a wide variety of people and their experience helped shape his book.

"Because I'm a surgeon, I see a lot of people from the lower social-economic classes, so hearing how they live touches me. Though this book is a fiction, the story comes from that experience."

"The story is about a surgeon who lives and works in the Middle East. When he arrives there, the working hours he was promised turns out to be more - not six hours but eight hours and later rising to 10 hours.

"However, he becomes a huge saviour of his family, though they don't know what he is sacrificing.

"We also see other people's stories through his eyes.

"The scenario is changing now, people know a little more now than they used to.

"But the essential point of the story is that though people come here and struggle - if you have a passion and struggle to achieve it, you can make it," he added.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: India | novel | Migrant workers |

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