Bahrain: Two Agitating Indians Workers Deported


Manama, Feb 12: Faced with a number of strikes involving more than 2,000 workers, majority of them Indians, authorities in Bahrain began acting tough by deporting two Indian labourers, as trade unions expressed support for the agitators.

The General Federation of Bahrain Trade Unions (GFBTU) yesterday said Indian workers have the same right as Bahrainis to fight for better conditions. "Workers have the right to strike to get themselves heard, if the employers and authorities will not listen," said GFBTU information secretary Jaffer Khalil.

"This is a basic right of any worker - whether Bahraini or expatriate," he was quoted as saying by Gulf Daily News.

Indians officials told PTI over phone that they have been urging the workers not to go on strike since the action is illegal under the country's laws.

Authorities began cracking the whip on agitators by deporting two Indians who acted as spokesmen for workers of the Hafeera Contracting Company, who downed their tools on Saturday demanding a hike in their salary.

The two -- G Balakrishnan and Mohammed Shafi -- were sent home on separate flights.

Before boarding his flight home, Balakrishnan said company chairman Isa Mohammed Abdulrahim had visited the camp and asked for five representatives to go with him to the company office to discuss their demands.

Abdulrahim agreed to raise the workers' salaries from next month, though no specific amount was agreed, he said. The unskilled workers get a monthly basic salary of BD50 (Rs.5,275) while the semi-skilled workers get BD60.


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