The Indian Embassy in Saudi Arabia is mulling setting up an emergency fund for medical treatment of Indians working in the unorganised sectors in the Kingdom.
Ambassador MOH Farooq has promised to seek the permission of the Indian government to divert part of the funds of the embassy for these workers, according to the Federation of the Kerala Associations in Saudi Arabia (FOKASA).
The aim is to create a fund amounting to 250,000 Saudi Riyals (SR), which will be administered by the Indian embassy, with contributions coming from the embassy's welfare section, Indian expatriates and fund-raising campaigns through cultural programmes, said FOKASA.
R Muraleedharan, convener of FOKASA, told a news conference about the blueprint of a medical treatment plan for thousands of Indian workers in the unorganised sector like livestock farms, camel owners and other establishments with a workforce of 10 employees or less.
He said that since these employees do not earn more than SR 600 a month, they find it difficult to bear the cost of treatment when they fall sick.
Muraleedharan said the fund would target poor Indian workers facing medical emergency. The association has also entered into an agreement with some polyclinics for the treatment of workers.
In case an employee is in need of long-term treatment which requires his hospitalisation, the beneficiary will be paid SR 2,000 towards air fare to enable him to undergo treatment in his home state in India, said Muraleedharan.