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Kin of Indian youth sold as slave in Saudi Arabia seek govt help

The family members of Jayanta Biswas, the 23-year old automobile engineer who was sold as a slave to a Saudi Arabian citizen in that country, are still

kolkata Updated: Nov 10, 2016 01:20 IST
Soumen Datta
Soumen Datta
Hindustan Times
Jayanta Biswas,Saudi Arabia,Mamata Banerjee
Saudi Arabia is home to large number of expats from India, who work there for better pay, one of them is Jayanta Biswas, who was sold as a slave to Saudi citizen and his whereabouts are still clueless.(AFP File Photo)

The family members of Jayanta Biswas, the 23-year old automobile engineer who was sold as a slave to a Saudi Arabian citizen in that country, are still clueless about his return. No official of the external affairs ministry contacted them till Tuesday night to brief them on any development in getting Jayanta back home.

“I am staying with a friend in a small room. My ‘kafeel’ (‘master’) is threatening to take me back to his place where he plans to do bad things with me again. I have no idea what he will do with me. He might deprive me of food, and even sleep, just as he did for such a long time. He will also force me to work for 24 hours, I am sure” Jayanta told HT over phone from Riyadh on Tuesday evening.

For the past few days he has put up with Mohammad Ahmed, the nephew of Tabrez Alam, the Mumbai-based agent who sent Biswas to Riyadh.

Biswas sounded completely despondent about his future. He felt that the Indian high commission in Riyadh had given up on him and his chances of making it back to India were bleak. “The officials at the mission are telling me to go back to my ‘master’,” he said on the phone.

“I have simply no security here. My ‘master’ may come and pick me up any time,” Jayanta said, betraying a sense of utter panic.

On Monday night, Jayanta’s sister sent an email to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his intervention in the matter.

“We are really helpless. We will seek chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s intervention too to bring him back,” Ria Biswas told HT.

As a shattered Jayanta narrated his story, the horrors he had undergone came out with chilling details.

“Naief Bookme (my ‘master’) used to treat me as a slave. After my release from jail, he did not give me even water to drink. He would get perverse pleasure by asking me to clean sand from the desert. He would not let me take rest for even a minute as long as he was awake,” Jayanta said.

His dream of making it big in the Gulf lay shattered within hours of his landing in Riyadh on May 15. Promised a job of an automobile engineer that he was, he was instead sold off as a slave to the Saudi national.

Getting to know of his plight after many months, distressed members of his family got in touch with external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and urged her to help secure his safe return. But several days have passed since and even the family is losing out on hope now.

“Please help me. Please get me out of this hell. I will be simply dead if I remain here. I just want to return home, to in India,” an inconsolably sobbing Jayanta told HT.

Jayanta belongs to a middle class family from Naihati in North 24 Parganas. He got training in automobile engineering from a private institute in north Bengal.

First Published: Nov 10, 2016 00:15 IST