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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Telangana migrant’s mortal remains brought back from Saudi after 145 days

Suspension of international flights, among other reasons, had delayed the shipment of the body to India.

By: Express Web Desk | Hyderabad | September 6, 2020 10:59:25 am
Fifty-five-year-old Sunke Rajaiah, who hailed from Kondapur Village of Jagtial district, died on April 14 while being treated at a hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Nearly five months after the death of a migrant worker from Telangana in Saudi Arabia, his mortal remains reached Hyderabad Saturday.

Fifty-five-year-old Sunke Rajaiah, who hailed from Kondapur Village of Jagtial district, died on April 14 while being treated at a hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Suspension of international flights, among other reasons, had delayed the shipment of the body to India.

According to a press release, a Member of Telangana Legislative Council, T. Jeevan Reddy, brought the matter to the attention of the Indian Embassy in Riyadh through the portal MADAD (Consular Services Management System) on June 21.

Officials told him that the embassy was not aware of the matter even though Sunke Rajaiah had been dead for over a month. They assured that they would register the death immediately and begin the repatriation process.

Sending the body was further delayed as Rajaiah’s sponsor did not issue the exit permit on time. Badugu Laxman, a social worker from Telangana in Saudi Arabia, worked with his team to send the body to India. Rajaiah’s coffin reached the Hyderabad Airport Saturday evening, said Bheem Reddy Mandha, the President, Emigrants Welfare Forum, who was in constant touch with the Embassy.

On the initiative of Dharmapuri MLA and state minister Koppula Eshwar, the NRI cell of the Telangana state government has arranged a free ambulance facility for transporting the coffin from Hyderabad to their native village. The family members said the funeral will be held in the village on September 6, Sunday.

Quoting the response to a Lok Sabha query on November 20, 2019, Swadesh Parkipandla, the President of the Pravasi Mithra Labour Union, said that every year, about 2,600 Indians die of various reasons like heart attack, illness, suicide, worksite accident, road traffic accident, etc in Saudi Arabia. The cancellation of visas and transportation costs are prime reasons behind the delay in the repatriation of dead bodies.

Any given time around 100 mortal remains of Indian workers is lying in mortuaries in Saudi Arabia waiting to be repatriated back home. Logjam in the repatriation of dead bodies in the jurisdiction of Indian Missions in Riyadh and Jeddah due to staff shortage, he said.

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