Around 67.7 percent of Bangladeshi returnee migrants did not receive their due wages after February 2020 in Gulf countries. Moreover, 38.7 percent of them experienced pay cut.
The information was revealed in a joint study of Refugee and Migratory Movement Research Unit (RMMRU) and Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA).
Finding of the study titled, "Addressing Systemic Challenges of Wage Theft: Bangladesh Covid-19 Returnees from the Gulf States,'' were shared through a virtual event organized by Bangladesh Civil Society for Migrants (BCSM) and RMMRU on Wednesday.
The study was conducted from March 25 to May 6 this year by interviewing a total of 1,160 migrants from 45 districts of Bangladesh who returned from Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, and Kuwait.
According to the study, each returnee lost Tk 1,79,989 on average in wages and other entitlements. However, 92 percent of them did not register complaints in their respective countries.
The report said that 48.6 percent of the migrants who returned to the country lost jobs and 63 percent were compelled to return or stay back here in Bangladesh.
The report also showed that 28.5 of the returnees came back amid the pandemic on vacation and got stranded in Bangladesh.
C R Abrar, executive director of RMMRU while presenting the findings of the study said that these experiences of the migrants reveal the systemic weakness of the protection structure of workers especially during an emergency situation.
He further said that the arbitrary action of the employers in terminating workers in violation of the contract and without compensation is rigid.