Original story: 7/31/16
India authorities pledge to bring home Indians who are facing a ‘food crisis’ in Saudi Arabia. Due to the drop in oil prices, many companies such as the Binladin Group, have laid off tens of thousands of workers. many workers have not been paid wages and don’t even have enough money to buy food or a plane ticket back to India. There are upwards of 3 million Indians living in Saudi Arabia who are facing such hardships. There was no date given for when repatriation activities will begin. Source: Reuters: India says to bring back workers facing ‘food crisis’ in Saudi
Update: 8/03/16: Repatriation efforts begin
Vijay Kumar Singh, a junior Indian foreign minister, arrived in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia to begin the process to bring home 10,000 laid off Indian workers. The Jeddah consulate is distributing emergency food rations to the laid off employees while India repatriates them. Source: New Straits Times Online: Indian minister visits Saudi to repatriate 10,000 stranded workers
Update: 11/17/16: Some workers repatriated
Around 2,000 distressed Indian workers in Saudi Arabia, who lost their jobs due to a slowdown in oil economy, have returned home since August, Parliament was informed on Thursday.
“As per latest data available, a total of 1,877 workers have arrived in India till November 11. The process is still on,” minister of state for external affairs VK Singh told Rajya Sabha. In one year, about 2,700 workers, who lost their jobs, were either rescued by agents or repatriated, Singh said.
External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj has requested all the State Governments to provide necessary assistance to those who return home due to distress, Singh said. “Ministry of External Affairs through its Missions abroad has facilitated return of distressed Indian workers from Gulf countries including those who have lost their jobs. This facilitation includes logistical support as well as providing air tickets whenever required,” Singh said.
In reply to another query, he said except Iraq and Egypt to some extent, there is no significant threat of losing jobs by the large number of Indian workers due to economic slowdown and “indigenisation of jobs” in the Middle East.
Singh said the Government has successfully secured repatriation of those Indian workers who were facing distress due to non-payment of salaries in Saudi Arabia, after filing their claims through Indian Mission. Source: Hindustan Times: Around 2700 returned from Saudi Arabia in last year after losing jobs