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Bangladeshi expats demonstrate in front of Foreign Ministry

  • Published at 01:57 pm September 29th, 2020
immigrant workers gather-Syed Zakir Hossain
Migrant workers gather in front of the office of Saudi Arabian Airlines at Pan Pacific Sonargaon hotel in Dhaka for tickets on Tuesday, September 24, 2020 Syed Zakir Hossain /Dhaka Tribune

A group of expatriates met the ministry officials and discussed their issues

Bangladeshi migrant workers, who worked in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, have staged a demonstration in front of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Dhaka demanding automatic increase of expiry date of their visas and work permits.

A number of migrants, whose visas and work permits have expired or are about to expire soon, took to the streets on Tuesday and marched towards the ministry from Karwan Bazar with a procession chanting slogans to meet their demands.

Later, a group of expatriates met the ministry officials and discussed their issues.

Dhaka Metropolitan Police Deputy Commissioner (Ramna Division) Sazzadur Rahman said the authorities of the ministry asked them to provide a list of the workers whose work permits and visas have expired. 

"The ministry will take steps for them," he added.

After the discussion, the migrants flocked to the Ramna Park area to prepare the list.


Also Read - Bangladeshi expats unsure about return to Saudi Arabia


Earlier in the morning, migrant workers, who got stranded in Bangladesh after returning home on vacation from the kingdom due to the Covid-19 pandemic, gathered in front of the head office of Saudia, formerly known as Saudi Arabian Airlines, at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Dhaka in Karwan Bazar.

The airline is providing tokens (serial 2,301 to 2,700) for the day to the expatriates for the tickets.

Expatriates have also gathered at the Motijheel office of Biman Bangladesh Airlines.

Biman's Assistant Director Jahidul Islam Biswas said: "We have enough flights and are providing tokens to the expatriates. Tickets will be issued based on their documents."

Hundreds of Bangladeshi migrant workers have been staging demonstrations since last week, blocking the Karwan Bazar intersection and protesting over  their failure to get tickets to return to their workplaces in the Middle Eastern country.

Many workers expressed their apprehension that they would not be able to join their workplaces in time due to the shortage of flights and tickets as their visas and work permits would expire soon.

On September 23, the Saudi government announced that it will extend the Iqama (work permit) and visa-duration by 24 days for those Bangladeshis whose documents will expire by September 30. If required, further assistance will be provided by the government.

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