Nepali Migrant Workers Rights: Govt. Urged to Act on NHRC Recommendations

NHRC recommended a 16-point document for effective management of foreign employment sector and address malpractices in the sector
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Nepali Migrant Workers Rights: Govt. Urged to Act on NHRC Recommendations

In a move addressing Nepali migrants concerns, various stakeholders pertaining to human rights have urged the Government of Nepal to implement the National Human Right Commission (NHRC) recommendations.

NHRC has recently recommended to the government, a 16-point document for effective management of foreign employment sector and address malpractices in the sector.

Strict monitoring of recruiting agencies and agents, immediate safeguarding of migrant workers facing challenges across foreign destinations and review of existing laws pertaining to them are among the key recommendations.

In response, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) forwarded the proposal to nine concerned ministries that need to give their nod for implementing the recommendations.

“The government is paying much attention to bringing back bodies of migrant workers. Similar attention should be given to those languishing in jail with no means to legal services, critically injured, and workers in coma in various hospitals. These workers should be brought back too,” says Sudip Pathak NHRC member.

What Stakeholders Said?
The recommendations were formulated after rounds of discussions among the Ministry of Labor Employment and Social, Security, Foreign Employment Promotion Board (FEPB), Department of Foreign Employment, recruiting agencies and various other concerned stakeholders.

Welcoming the proposed recommendations, stakeholders felt more such proposals would be required to address the concerns of Nepali migrant workers.

Basant Karki from the International Labor Organization (ILO) urged the government to also discuss on protecting the rights of foreign workers coming to work in Nepal and involve private sector players in enforcing recommendations.

Stakeholders called for:

  • Ending discrimination of aspirant female migrant workers from moving abroad for jobs, in a bid to protect them from trafficking and exploitation
  • Ratification of conventions and signing of all the possible bilateral labor agreements with the destination countries
  • Empowerment of Nepali missions in foreign destinations making them capable of handling migrants’ issues
  • Job security of migrant workers without any extra payment under the ‘Employer Pays’ principle
  • Strict enforcement of ‘Free Visa Free Ticket’ scheme and ensure acknowledgement for every payment that migrants pay to recruiting agencies

 
In response, Director General at the Department of Foreign Employment (DoFE) Dilip Chapagain commended NHRC recommendations terming them ‘encouraging’ towards overhaul of Nepal’s foreign employment sector.

“The government has taken numerous measures recently to manage the sector and protect rights of Nepali workers,” said Chapagain.

Lauding the governmental efforts, NHRC Chairperson Anup Raj Sharma said, “It looks like most of the recommendations have been already implemented which is a good sign for everyone.”

Kul Prasad Karki, President of the Migrant Nepali Coordinator Committee, opined that the right implementation of these recommendations would definitely improve the foreign employment sector.

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October 8, 2018 |

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