Returning expats are finding themselves blocked from entering Bahrain, stranded at the airport and without jobs because Bahraini employers are cancelling their visas after they go on holiday. They were not even informed that their contracts had been terminated. Diplomats and community volunteers said the victims were mainly low-income laborers from India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, with the Bangladeshi ambassador saying they receive scores of such complaints on a daily basis.
“The scene is that employers can cancel staff visas through the Labour Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA) and the cases we received show that they do it within a day or two after the employee leaves,” said Indian Community Relief Fund (ICRF) member and social worker K T Salim.
However, Labour and Social Development Undersecretary Sabah Al Dossary said that they have not received any representation from embassies or employees about such cases adding that “Bahrain’s Labor Law will not allow such inhuman practices”.