Tuesday, November 30, 2021
NRIPandemic upends lives of NRIs in Gulf

Pandemic upends lives of NRIs in Gulf

Published: 18th Nov 2020 11:15 pm

Jeddah: The volatile job market and financial stress amid Covid-19 pandemic has led to serious health issues among several Indians in the Gulf region. Some of them are affected with hypertension that increased the risk of heart, brain, kidney and other ailments. It is a major cause of premature death in the world including the Gulf region.

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For Mohammed Abdul Khaliq, salary is the only source of income, and delay can mean not only financial but also mental stress and health issues. This is how this 37-year-old Hyderabadi in Riyadh developed hypertension that led to failure of both kidneys.

Without a penny in hand and shelter or food, Khaliq, on being discharged from hospital, is desperately seeking help to return home to continue with his treatment and meet his family in what he believes are his last days of life.

No salary for 18 months
Khaliq was working with an IT firm in Saudi capital where he didn’t receive salary for the last 18 months, according to him. “My firm is unable to pay my salary as it is caught in the whirlpool of recession and business losses,” he said.

“Life has been harsh for the last 18 months, passing through difficult times and all of sudden, I came to know that my renal system was affected by hypertension and I was admitted to hospital for dialysis”, he said.

Khaliq spent seven months in a leading private hospital in Riyadh where he went to renal treatment and dialysis. A hefty bill over 2 lakh Riyals occurred for his treatment, according to him.

He was recently discharged from the hospital and advised to do two dialysis sessions a week.

Khaliq iqama (residence permit) is inching towards expiry soon, he wants to complete the exit procedure before it and wants to return home. With limited physical movement coupled with lack of money, he is unable to pursue his case effectively.

Khaliq had requested Indian embassy to help him to recover his pending salary and other arrears from his employer, which is not yet materialised. Meanwhile, noted community worker Abdul Jabbar and others are assisting him.

There were several similar cases surfacing recent period where hypertension is ruining the lives of NRI workers especially with blue-collar jobs.

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