Bangladeshi women migrants working abroad face discrimination, deprivation

Ns News Online Desk:Ns News Online Desk: Despite contributions to home and host countries, many Bangladeshi women return home exploited, empty handed Tens of thousands of female Bangladeshi migrants across the world, especially in the Middle East, are facing deprivation, despite their activeness in boosting their host countries’ economy.

According to the records of the South Asian nation’s Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training (BMET), nearly 12 million nationals, including 800,000 women, are working in different countries as migrant labor or overseas employees.

Bangladesh has achieved a record of more than $48 billion in foreign exchange reserves, while the delta nation received $21.76 billion in remittances in 2020, according to government records. Most migrants are now working in Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, Kuwait, and Qatar.

For years, female Bangladeshi migrants have been suffering from discrimination, as well as physical and mental ill-treatment. “I migrated to Lebanon eight years back, leaving behind my husband and two kids in my home country with a dream to make my family financially solvent. But, I came back home in January this year with empty hands,” Hiron Nesa, 45, told Anadolu Agency via telephone from the central district of Manikganj.

She said that because of the coronavirus pandemic, her employer did not pay her wages through the last two years before sending her back to Bangladesh. “It’s a great mental agony for me that I couldn’t even carry a smartphone for my son despite my promise to him,” said Nesa, who added that during eight years of employment in Lebanon, she lived as a captive.

She also had to pay for the agent that arranged her job as a domestic worker in exchange for Bangladeshi Taka 100,000 ($1,200). “My agent never looked after me after my arrival in Lebanon and I had no way to contact our mission to get my due wages before returning,” she said. Nesa said she had to work hard overtime without extra pay. “I tolerated all the plights with the hope that at least before my final departure I could earn a good amount of money, but I got nothing.”

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