Baijayant seeks safe return of stranded Odia youths in Jeddah

Bhubaneswar: Kendrapara MP Baijayant Panda has requested the Indian embassy in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia to make arrangements for the safe return of two Odia youths from the Middle East region.

In a letter to Indian diplomat Hemant Kotalwar, Panda said, “It has come to my attention that two individuals from my constituency of Kendrapara, Odisha, who went to Jeddah on work through an Indian contractor are unable to return to India.”

“As per information given by the father of one of them, their visa has expired for which they are unable to return. The families have made multiple requests to the Indian contractor but they have only been given empty assurances so far,” the letter read.

Family sources said, Pabitra Mohan Jena and Bhanja Kishore Sahoo had gone to Saudi Arabia in January, 2014 through a Mumbai-based contractor for some work. But the contractor and six others have returned to India leaving Jena and Sahoo behind.

According to a family member, their visas have expired and the contractor is giving false assurances on their return to India.

Panda in his letter mentioned, “The families are at loss as to what steps to take next considering the harassment faced by them in Jeddah. ……In light of this, I would request you to kindly take steps to facilitate their safe return to India.”