Expat’s body held up by sponsor flown home thanks to EP emir’s intervention

February 24, 2019

Irfan Mohammed

Saudi Gazette


An expatriate’s dead body, which was held up in the Kingdom after his legal sponsor demanded money to cancel his residency permit and stamp the exit visa on his passport, was finally repatriated home thanks to the intervention of the regional emir’s office.

Shahid Ali, 36, worked as a house driver in the Eastern Province. On Jan. 19, Ali suddenly fell sick and rushed to a hospital in Dammam, where he died on the same day.

Since then his family members in Gujarat, Pakistan, were desperately running after everyone whom they knew to get his body repatriated back home for the last rites.

The Pakistan Embassy in Riyadh responded positively and came forward to bear the expenses for repatriation of the body, which was unsuccessful as Ali’s sponsor refused to complete the required immigration formalities such as the cancellation of the residency permit and stamping the passport with exit visa.

For the repatriation of a dead body, it is mandatory to cancel the deceased’s residency permit and to stamp an exit-only visa on the passport.

Ali’s sponsor demanded SR10,000 to complete the formalities, said Niaz Munshi, a noted Pakistani social worker in Dammam who coordinated the case with the concern authorities.

“The sponsor demanded the amount because Shahid had been working for someone else,” Munshi added.

“After unsuccessfully running after Shahid’s sponsor for weeks to get his passport stamped with the exit visa, we finally knocked on the doors of Prince Saud Bin Naif, the emir of the Eastern Province, for justice,” Munshi told Saudi Gazette over the phone.

The emir promptly acted upon their grievance and the matter was referred to the police, according to Munshi.

Expressing gratitude for the swift action by emirate, he said the police ensured that all legal formalities were completed by the sponsor.

Pakistan national carrier PIA repatriated Ali’s body to back home free of cost, while the Pakistan Embassy in Riyadh bore the cost of chemical embalming and the handling charges.

Munshi completed all required legal procedures involving various government offices.

Finally, Ali’s body was flown back home on the weekend for burial.

February 24, 2019
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