Dubai: Indian expats stranded back home claim they are in a desperate situation as the long wait to return to the UAE as has resulted in an acute financial crunch.
Besides facing the risk of job loss and salary cuts, piling rent, utility bills and unpaid children’s school fees are adding to their woes by the day.
Speaking to Gulf News, some frustrated expats in India said all they want now is to return to the UAE.
Kaushik Samanta received his Federal Authority for Identity & Citizenship (ICA) approval but that of his wife, Paramita and eight-year-old son, Abhiraj, are still pending and that is why the family is stuck in the eastern Indian metropolis of Kolkata. Kaushik, who left with his family on emergency leave to attend to his mother, said he has not received his salary since May 1. But he is continuing to meet his expenses in the UAE which includes a monthly rent of Dh3,000 for a two bedroom apartment in Sharjah, besides utility bills. He is also paying for his car insurance every month. “My employer said my salary will resume once I resume work in UAE. So it is a matter of urgency that I return to the UAE.”
Indian driver Shyne Muraleedharan, working at an Indian school in Ajman, has been stranded with his 13-year-old daughter Krishna Thulasi in Alappuzha, a town in the southern Indian state of Kerala since March. Both of them received the ICA approval. “But due to the non-availability of flights, we could not return. Three weeks later, our ICA approval expired. We have reapplied but with no success. I have not received a salary. All of us are now dependant on my wife, who barely earns Dh4,000 a month. She is struggling to pay the rent, utility bills and our child’s fees. If I can return to the UAE, my salary will start coming again and it will bring some relief.”
Komal Gohil, 30, has been stranded in the Indian city of Patna for the last five months, along with her housemaid, and four children. Her husband is continuing to pay an EMI for a villa in Al Furjan which he bought for the family. “The children’s education has to be paid for. Two of my children have missed all their online classes. The wait has been far too long for us. My husband is having a hard time paying bills and managing expenses both in India and in Dubai.”
Sajitha M, 43, who works as an administrator in Ras Al Khaimah, has been stranded in India since March. She too has a pile of bills to pay, including rent and utilities. “My company is paying only half my salary which is just Dh4,500. In this I have to pay my rent and utilities.I need to return to UAE and get my full pay back.”
Sudheesh Krishnan, 37, stranded in India since March, said he too is having to pay all expenses in UAE while also paying for his living in India. “I am taking care of two homes, two sets of bills. I came to India on an emergency leave to take care of my mother in hospital. I am also struggling with my mother’s hospital bills. I need to return to UAE, get my job back and start earning what I used to. My application has been rejected several times. I am reaching a tipping point. I just want this long wait to end.”