RIYADH: Some Indian nurses who recently arrived here on work visas have sought redressal from Ministry of Health (MoH) against termination of their employment contract in violation of the Saudi labor laws.
The qualified nurses who arrived to work in hospitals under MoH supervision some five months ago said they were served termination notices last week with instructions to stop work with immediate effect.
The nurses, recruited by Indian recruiting agents, have urged the concerned Saudi authorities to honor the employment contract (under the Saudi Labor Laws) that stipulate at least one month’s notice before a termination letter is issued and full payment of monthly basic salary.
R. Muraleedharan, Riyadh-chapter president of the Federation of Keralite Association in Saudi Arabia, (Fokasa) that is handling the nurses’ case, said the reason cited in the MoH letter of termination issued to Indian nurses was ‘Saudization’.
He said the recruitment process in India is continuing while the MoH is issuing termination notices to those (graduate) nurses who arrived in Saudi Arabia merely five months ago asking them to stop work and prepare to go home.
“It is surprising to note that while the MoH has issued termination notices to nurses on account of “Saudization”, interviews through the Indian-based recruiting agents are ongoing in various parts of India for recruitment of “graduate nurses” to work under MoH-supervised hospitals in the Kingdom,” he said
The recruiting agents based in India are advertising for vacancies on their websites inviting applicants for interviews. Some hundreds of nurses are about to arrive in Saudi Arabia to work in hospitals under the supervision of MoH, said Murleedharan.
Murleedharan said the affected Indian nurses have sought Fokasa’s intervention by writing letters to the concerned Indian authorities.
The Indian nurses are demanding from the Protector General of Emigrants (PGE) in New Delhi to instruct the recruiting agents in India to reimburse the amount they (nurses) have paid in India that ranged between Indian rupees 50,000 to 125,000 (approximately SR4,000 and SR10,000).
“Fokasa has found that Indian nurses have sent petitions to the MoH offices from various parts of Saudi Arabia, with a request either to revoke the terminations, relocate them or resolve the case with proper reimbursement,” Murleedharan said.
– Saudi Gazette