Riyadh: A poor NRI worker has been toiling for last six years in Saudi Arabian deserts as a shepherd and is struggling hard to return home.
Tadichettu Chinna Rajaih (38), a native of Laxmipur village of Bejjanki Mandal in Karimnagar district went to Saudi Arabia to work as construction labourer in 2011. However, he was assigned the work of a shepherd and was asked to look after camels in a remote desert near Hail in central Saudi Arabia.
“I worked hard for two years and was completely confined to the desert for looking after camels, but I was not paid a single penny nor provided Iqama (a residence permit or work license),” he said. “After losing hope, I ran away, but it was extremely difficult, I walked for a week in the desert and found the job of shepherd with another employer, he too cheated me and did not pay me any money,” he added.
Since then he has been looking after camels and sheep in remote villages, where he was often cheated by employers and not paid his salary. “At times they gave me some measly amount or gave their mobile phone to speak with my wife in India,” he added.
Rajaih said that once in the desert he found a Malayalee who helped him to get to a nearby village two years ago, since then he has been living there.
He has not been to any town or city in Saudi Arabia other than Hail. “For the first time now, I came out to submit exit request following the announcement of general amnesty which I was informed by some Malayalees,” Rajaih said.
“Sarafuddin, Indian community social worker spotted me in Saudi Passport office, where I was looking for help and processed my exit for returning home,” he said. He thanked Saudi officials for assisting him to return home.
Rajaih, a SC, said that he was hopeful that KCR government would allot him three acres land and he won’t have to go back to gulf ever again. Father of three, he is desperate to reach home and see his young children, his youngest son, who is 6 years now, was just born when he left for Saudi.