Rajasthan youth missing in Saudi Arabia, family seeks help from MEA
Vikramaditya Singh Rathore left for Saudi Arabia through an agency on October 4. He spoke to his family last on October 18 and told them that he was being mistreated and made to work 21 hours without foodUpdated: Dec 16, 2017 21:08 IST
A Jaipur family has sought help of the external affairs ministry to trace their 23-year-old son whom the family has not been able to contact since October this year, days after he landed in Saudi Arabia where he had been offered work.
Vikramaditya Singh Rathore left for Saudi Arabia through an agency on October 4. He spoke to his family last on October 18 and told them that he was being mistreated and made to work 21 hours without food. His phone had been taken by his boss and he claimed that he borrowed a phone from a colleague to make the call. The family said they have not been able to get in touch with him after that.
Rathore, a resident of Khatipura area of Jaipur, went to Riyadh through an agent, Mukesh Singh Chauhan, a resident of Haryana. Chauhan said that Vikram would be a supervisor in a store and would be paid Rs 50,000-60,000 per month, alleges his father Mahaveer Singh Rathore.
He claimed to have given Rs 2.5 lakh to Chauhan for getting the documents, passport and visa prepared. Chauhan works for Mumbai based Al-Husaini Travels. Chauhan told us that Vikram would be a supervisor in a store in Riyadh, the father said.
“The last time we spoke to my brother was on October 18. He said he had been taken to some place around 200 km from Riyadh and was being made to do menial labour,” says Vikram’s elder brother Harshvardhan.
“He said his phone and passport and documents had been taken by his boss. We don’t even know if he is dead or alive,” said Mahaveer, 60, who retired from a government-run hotel.
He and Harshvardhan have been running around different government agencies to seek help.
“We met (Union Sports Minister and BJP MP) Rajyavardhan Rathore who has written to the Union External Ministry,” Maveer said. They met the minister in October.
They approached Jodhpur MP Gajendra Singh seeking his intervention to lodge a case as the police was not willing to register their complaint. After the MP’s intervention, a complaint of cheating was filed at Vasihali Nagar police station on December 13.
“When we asked Chauhan and Javed, owner of Al-Husaini, they kept saying that they will make us speak to him and bring him back soon. But more than two months have passed and there still is no news of him,” said Harshvardhan, an advocate.
He said that they have even spoken to an official at the Indian Embassy in Riyadh. “He told us to give Vikram’s exact location or tell him to reach the embassy as they have few staff and can’t search for all missing persons,” he claimed.
Chauhan, however, denied that he sent Vikramaditya to Saudi Arabia. “I have nothing to do with this. He went on his own. I don’t work for Al-Husaini travels.”
Prabhu Singh, the investigating officer in the case said, “We spoke to Javed of Al-Husaini Travels who said he will contact Vikramaditya and make him speak to his family. We have also summoned Mukesh Chauhan to question him.”
Vikramaditya’s is not an isolated case. There have been many such cases reported from the state. The Shekhawati region of north Rajasthan from where a lot of labourers go to the Middle East is infamous for many fake agents and agencies who have duped families on the pretext of providing employment.
The agents send them on pretext of jobs but when they get there they are made to do menial jobs and are ill treated. Their documents are seized and they have no contact with their families.
First Published: Dec 16, 2017 21:08 IST