Duped by travel agents, at least 14 Indians stranded in Saudi Arabia have sought the Indian Government’s help. Most of them are languishing in Saudi Arabian jails.
At least 12 of them are from Himachal Pradesh’s Mandi district, two others being from Punjab. The other two are working in a company in the Middle East nation, police said.
Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur has appealed to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, urging their return.
Two local travel agents — Mohammad Asif and Qadir – who had allegedly sent them to work in the Saudi Arabia on tourist visas, have been charged under Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) but not arrested.
According to police, their tourist visas expired making them ineligible to work there without work visas. The travel agents had promised these people of acquiring work visas and allegedly cheated them of Rs 90,000 each.
“The travel agents were charged on the basis of a complaint lodged by a Sundernagar resident Saroj whose husband Harjinder Singh is one of the fourteen people,” police officer Gurdev Sharma said. “Though an FIR against the two travel agents was registered but neither of them has been arrested so far, as the matter is under investigation.”