Family members of Bangladeshi expatriate Joynal Abedin, who died in a hospital of Saudi Arabia on September 5, have been facing difficulties to bring his body back home.
The family is currently suffering great financial hardship, while Joynal's employers are refusing to bear the costs needed for the transportation.
Joynal’s widow Rahima Akter revealed the matter in a press briefing at Raipura Press Club on Wednesday.
Joynal, son of Ajgar Ali of Uttar Para village in Raipura upazila, Narsingdi, went to Saudi Arabia on October 24, 2015. He took loans from some non-government organisations (NGOs) to meet his travel expenses.
A father of three, Joynal then started working as a cleaner in a madrasa. He died on September 5 while undergoing treatment at a hospital.
“It has been nearly a month since he [Joynal] died. But, we have yet to bring back his body as the entire process will require Tk300,000,” Rahima told reporters.
“Will my children not get the chance to see their father for the very last time? Can anybody please inform the government that we want the body back home and bury it here?” she urged.
When contacted, District Employment and Manpower Office Acting Assistant Director Md Mostafa Jabbar said: “Rahima already wrote to us about her husband's death, asking the government to bear the shipment costs of the body. We have conveyed the message to the higher authorities.”
Raipura Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Md Shafiqul Islam said Rahima claimed that Tk300,000 was needed to bring her husband's body home.
The UNO, however, noted that he personally verified the information and found out that the shipment of a dead body from Saudi Arabia could be made free of cost. “I contacted the Bangladesh consulate in Jeddah and was informed that sending a dead body from there was free of cost.”