Workers’ welfare package on cards

  • foreign employment act
- Post Report, Kathmandu

Sep 14, 2016-

The Ministry of Labour and Employment has said that the Foreign Employment Act, which is being revised, would incorporate a welfare package for Nepali migrant working abroad as pledged by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal during his recent address to the nation. 

Last Thursday, PM Dahal had announced that the government would increase relief amount to families of Nepali who have lost their lives while working abroad and provide seed money to free others awaiting death penalty in the Gulf. He had also declared that foreign employment service would be expanded at Nepali missions to facilitate migrant Nepali workers to have their work contract renewed in the work destinations. 

“There are legal constraints to enforce the issues included in the PM’s announcement. So we are working to make further revision in the draft of the Foreign Employment Act to incorporate these issues,” said Govinda Mani Bhurtel, spokesperson at the Ministry of Foreign Employment. 

Ministry officials are, however, discontent with PM Dahal for making announcement without holding consultations with them. 

The PM had announced to increase the compensation amount to the families of migrant workers who die in labour destinations to Rs700,000 from the existing Rs500,000. He also pledged to set up seed fund of Rs500,000 for Nepalis convicted in murder but could be saved by paying blood money. The government had recently decided to increase the relief amount to the families of the deceased migrants from Rs300,000 to Rs500,000. 

Blood money is a money-penalty paid by a murder convict to the victim’s family. Some Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates allows the family of a person who has been killed to pardon the murder convict with or without blood money.

The ministry officials said that the pledged amount would be provided from the Migrant Workers’ Welfare Fund--established by collecting Rs 1,000 from each of the outgoing migrant workers. The Foreign Employment Promotion Board, which was established to handle the welfare of the migrant workers, is the patron of the fund.  

“The ministry has given clear instructions to the board to make appropriate changes to the legal provision to deliver on the promises made by the head of the government,” said a ministry official. 

Published: 14-09-2016 08:10

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