A Bangladeshi-owned construction company in Singapore has allegedly been denying about 12 Bangladeshi workers their salaries worth crores of taka.
SJH Trading, a construction company in Singapore's Jalan Sultan, is facing a case at the Singapore's Employment Claims Tribunals (ECT) over this, the Straights Times newspaper reports.
When the workers were taken to Singapore they were promised a monthly salary of SG $1,600, or about Tk96,000, plus overtime.
But Shah Jahan, the manager of SJH Trading, immediately took their fingerprints on blank salary receipts upon arrival and has paid them next to nothing in the following months, the workers allege.
When some of the workers declined to put their fingerprints on blank paper, he threatened to cancel their work permits.
He told the newspaper that he had the receipts of salary payment
He also housed them in inhumane conditions, the Straights Times found upon visiting the quarters.
The newspaper found that the company is registered to one MA Ahmed, a Dhaka Ahmed, and Sumaya Jahan, the manager's daughter who lives with him in Singapore.
Shah Jahan has also cancelled the work permits of the men who have filed the claim, so now they are left unable to work or to support themselves, waiting for their claims to be resolved by the court.
Many of them have taken loans to go to the country.
The ECT held hearings for eight of the workers on Friday.
Hasan Mehedi, 46, who arrived in Singapore on Jan 12 and is the sole breadwinner for his nine family members, said SJH Trading owes him SG $15,910 in unpaid salary and overtime work.
He said he was paid $210 for January, $300 for February, $187 for March and $167.75 for April, and then in the next three months, nothing.
When he asked his boss why he was not paid, his work permit was cancelled the next day, on July 11.
The Straights Times found that SJH Trading was set up in March 2015. The company, has a paid up capital of $112,000, or about Tk66 lakh.
Shah Jahan, 53, told the paper he went to Singapore from Bangladesh in 1991 and became a permanent resident there in 1998.
The Migrant Workers' Centre (MWC), a foreign workers' advocacy and welfare group backed by MOM, the National Trades Union Congress and employers, said the workers approached the centre for help several weeks ago.
"We are helping them," said MWC executive director Bernard Menon. "Employers are responsible for food and lodging while the workers' complaints are being processed."