job scam
Five men from Kollam district in Kerala have found themselves duped by a local Kerala agent. Image Credit: Supplied

Five Indian men from Kollam district, Kerala, claim they are stuck in the UAE with no jobs.

The job-seekers to UAE claimed they were duped by a recruitment agent in Kerala who promised them sales jobs in packaging companies, only to come here to find out there are no jobs available.

One of the victims, Subin Suresh Raghawan, 27, told Gulf News that he and four other job-seekers were duped by the same agent in Kerala. “Each one of us has paid the agent Rs80,000 (Dh4,286) to secure a job here in the UAE.”

“The agent promised us sales jobs and our visit visa also says sales representative in the profession. But when we landed in Sharjah on May 23 the agent in UAE said there was no such jobs in the market at the moment. He put us up in a labour accommodation in Ajman,” said Raghawan.

“Here there were three other workers from Tamil Nadu who had been brought to the UAE by the same agent as ours. They informed me that they too had been duped by the local agent in India. The Tamil Nadu workers said they were promised supervisor roles in UAE a salary of Dh1,500 per month. But when they arrived here, they were made to do menial jobs including brooming, washing vessels and cleaning toilets in restaurants. They are made to work 12 hours a day for just Dh1,000 a month. They are frustrated and two of them returned home recently,” he added.

Raghawan said in their case, these men have not been offered any jobs whatsoever. Instead they have been moved around from one labour accommodation to another. “First we were put up in Ajman for two weeks, then moved to another accommodation in Dubai. Now some of us are in Al Ain, others in Ajman. There is barely any food to eat. Some Good Samaritans have been helping us with some food every now and then. We are unsure if we are getting the next meal.”

In a telephone interview to Gulf News, Raghawan said the Embassy of India in Abu Dhabi has come to know of their situation and is doing the needful to get their passports and send the men home.

Gulf News spoke to the agent and a staff of the company, Sundar Gandhi said: “We have previously worked with the same agent who brought these men from Kerala to the UAE. We have not had a problem with anyone before. In fact there were three other people from Tamil Nadu who also came from the same agent and they are all employed here in the UAE and they have no issues with us.”

In fact the recruitment agent in Kerala told me they arrived in the UAE without informing their local agent. “They are not happy with the jobs we have offered. Now they are asking for their passports, we will return it to them.”

Gulf News contacted a senior official of the Embassy of India in Abu Dhabi who has confirmed these men were indeed duped by an agent in Kerala. “They are victims of a job scam. The Embassy of India is in touch with the Indian men to help them go home. We have contacted the local agent in UAE to hand over the passports of these men. We are likely to get it tomorrow. We are providing all necessary assistance to the men with the help of the Indian community in Abu Dhabi.”