Two Indian workers die waiting to get arrears

Two Indian workers die waiting to get arrears

Jaswinder Singh (L) and Ponnam Satyanarayana. — Courtesy photos
Jaswinder Singh (L) and Ponnam Satyanarayana. — Courtesy photos

By Irfan Mohammed

JEDDAH — Two Indian workers of a construction company, who were waiting to receive their arrears before leaving the Kingdom, have died separately in Riyadh.

The tragic deaths within a short span has left their colleagues in a state of shock.

The two were part of scores of other employees of the company who were waiting for their dues to be cleared before departing for their homes.

Ponnam Satyanarayana, 47, died of cardiac arrest on Saturday. He complained of uneasiness in his chest and was rushed to a leading hospital but died on its way, sources said.

Earlier, on Feb. 21, 56-year-old Jaswinder Singh, also died of heart attack. His body is still lying in a hospital here.

Satyanarayana hailed from Jagtial district in Telangana and Jaswinder Singh was from Kapurthala district in Punjab. Both worked for the same company for over 23 years. They were concerned about their end of service benefits and other pending wages and were also plaintiff in a grievance filed with the labor court, said their colleagues.

The iqama (residence permit) of both the dead workers expired two years ago and subsequently they were deprived of medical insurance facility.

Also their passports were held by the sponsor. They were only in possession of documents issued by the Indian embassy which stated the reason for them not having original documents.

Sources said the authorities are working to expedite the repatriation process of the dead workers.

The two deceased workers, along with several other Indians, Nepalese and Pakistani nationals, have not been paid for more than a year. They were struggling to survive from mid-2015 and their situation became worse in the beginning of 2016.

In fact, these distressed workers were spending tough time on the streets but the Ministry of Labor and Social Development came to their rescue and shifted them to a proper accommodation near Thunamah road in the capital last September, according to workers. They also said the labor ministry is feeding them since then and pursuing their case. Some of the workers have recently started to receive their arrears, they added.


  1. I am sure these unfortunate Indians belong to Saudi Oger. Although people are dying but still media doesn’t want to identify the sponsor’s name.

  2. This is not the first time happen, what step the ministry has taken so far to save life of innocent people, ministry should punish all the culprit who ever is involved in this, plus all the dues plus pay till the final day mean including the period which this people fought for justice and above this compensation also to be give them,

  3. It is really a matter of serious concern which Indian Government must take up with the saudi Government at higher level.In a country that is considered as an umbrella of all muslim countries,such violations of rights are uncalled for.
    How the authorities and the court has been mum on this serious issue for the past two years where the rights of the workers are eaten by the company owners.
    It reflects very negatively on the country’s image in the international level and in the UN.
    Sushma swaraj, the FM of our country is requested to act immediately to protect the rights of indians abroad especially in GCC.

    • Indian embassy should take immediate action, to tackle this situation,
      And send these workers to their home country with their dues..

      • Indian embassy taken the action since August 2016. They are sending people without giving a single halala. They promised us to get pay/dues but now 8 months nothing happened.

  4. It is very heartbreaking news indeed!!
    Thusands of Saudi Oger workers have been left without their dues. Thousands have left on final exit for their respective homes without a single halala paid to them from their dues. And, thousands more are lamguishing here with expired Iqama and expired insurance. Many have died and many have committed suicide. Their families back home are also sufering and many have died & many have committed suicide.
    But alas nobody cares.
    Saudi authorities must look into this matter sympathetically. They must arrange to pay their outstanding dues and end of service benefits to these workers from Saudi Oger. These workers have given their blood and sweat for the developemnt of this country. And, if this country does not come to their help – and turns its back to them – then this will be considered a great injustice to them.
    Please for God’s sake do something about it.
    Get Saudi Oger to pay or you arrange to pay. Otherwise many more may die and many more may commit suicide.

  5. I request Indian Embassy and our FM Sushma Swaraj , please act before it is too late, due to stress and high tension people get heart attack.

    Thru emails and news paper ads. Indian Embassy should ask all Indians who have been deprived of their lawful dues to contact the Embassy to enable them to coordination with Saudi Government.

  6. I strongly recommend the CG of India to open a charity account for our fellow countrymen who died chasing their end-of-service benefits. At least their families back home get some financial support.
    And urge the embassy to get involved in resolving the issue immediately..

  7. What an unfortunate incident, our prayers and prayers are with deceased families. The concerned embassies must take up this issue with MOL and the employer must be taken to task. He must be prosecuted for his illegal acts i.e holding passport, not renewing iqamas and no salary for more than 12 months.

    • The employer is very powerful and nothing happened to employer. We poor people are suffering.

  8. After working for 23 years, this is what you get. It is quite unfortunate that such companies are able to get away without any punishment.. Is this the example you want to set for both foreign workers and foreign investors?

  9. It’s very sad to hear the loss of lives. And there is nothing new as usual the sponsor will be free of any kind of action from government authorities. People have lost the humanity for the sake of greed and fear of money.

  10. I am also suffering from injustice from the last 9 Months.saudi bin laden not paid me benefits after i was terminated..

  11. These fifty thousands plus Saudi Oger employees belong to many part of the world and each one of them is connected with many of his family members and friends. In the presence of social media this issue has become now an international issue of millions of people around the world and day by day it is spreading in every part of the globe. People have started talking what is happening in Saudi Arabia and who is responsible for this and why this issue is not being resolved by paying the labor pending dues.

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