Indian worker stranded in Bahrain to fly home
Manama, July 11, 2014
An Indian worker who has not seen his family for 25 years is due to return home tomorrow (July 12).
Parasuram Hublikar came to Bahrain in 1976 to work as a garage mechanic, but was slapped with a travel ban in 1999 over an unpaid debt that he claims to have paid off, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
The 58-year-old told the GDN he was excited to finally see wife Jamuna and 28-year-old son Jagdeesh again.
"For the last 14 years I have been running here and there, but in vain," he said.
"I am very happy that the authorities have resolved my problem.
"I have already informed my wife and son that I am coming, who broke into tears.
"I used to get jobs when my licence was valid but later I didn't get any job.
"I shared a small room in a farm with two workers and have been through times when I used to sleep without eating anything at night.
"I had good relations with customers so they sometimes brought vehicles to me even after I left the garage and had problems."
Hublikar, from Hubli in Karnataka, said he was thankful to his relatives who supported his wife and child, who was just three years old when he saw him last.
"My wife's relatives cared for them in my absence," he said.
"She started working as a teacher three years ago and is able to earn a decent living and support our son.
"I sent her money 10 years ago and never sent her anything since."
He said no expatriate who comes to Bahrain to earn a decent living should experience what he went through.
"What happened to me shouldn't happen to anyone," he said.
"If I was wrong, authorities should have punished me. If they thought I was a criminal they should have jailed me.
"Why drag my case for such a long time?
"Thank God I didn't get sick in these years, otherwise it would have been another problem."
He also thanked the Indian Embassy, the Indian Community Relief Fund (ICRF), the Nationality, Passports and Residence Affairs and social workers for helping him.
Embassy first secretary Ram Singh took up the case after Hublikar's appeal appeared in the GDN on May 18.
"We did a lot of work on this case and would like to thank all the government bodies involved in it," he said.
"Finally, this man is going home and will be re-united with his wife and son."
ICRF chairman Bhagwan Asarpota said well-known Indian community members also pitched in to help Hublikar return home.
"In addition to ICRF paying his dues to the immigration, some well-known Indians also paid cash to him," he said.
"The embassy approached ICRF with the case and asked for financial help."
The GDN earlier reported that although Hublikar claimed to have paid off the BD1,037 ($2,735.6) debt he was originally taken to court over, he lost the receipts proving the payments and was penniless. - TradeArabia News Service