Denied salary for 6 years, Indian woman in Saudi awaits exit

Tuesday, Dec 23, 2014,21:07 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Riyadh | An Indian woman, who worked here as a domestic help without being paid for the last six years, is awaiting her dues and an exit from Saudi Arabia. Shamsumma, a native of Kerala’s Kollam district, was brought to the kingdom around six years ago by a recruitment agency and was handed over to a Saudi family as a domestic help.
The recruitment agency fixed her monthly wage at 900 Saudi riyals (about USD 240) but was cut down to 700 Saudi riyals (USD 186). After receiving payments for four months, her employer refused to pay her wages, forcing her to stay at a government’s housemaid welfare centre here. Shamsumma was not allowed to speak to or contact anyone. However, two months ago, she managed to get in touch with a compatriot, a native of Kerala, who advised her to call her family to lodge a formal complaint with the Indian Embassy.
The Embassy then succeeded in tracing her whereabouts with the help of local police, an official said. After the intervention of Embassy, the employer agreed to pay her 33,000 Saudi riyals (USD 8792) and make the arrangements for her final exit. The employer, however, sought three weeks to make the arrangements, Arab News reported today.
Shamsumma, who was then taken out of her employer’s house, is currently staying at the government’s housemaid welfare centre here. Even after three weeks, the employer has failed to fulfil his promise, the report said. The official further said that embassy is following up the matter and Shamsumma will soon go back home with her dues.