The Battle Royale is on. Not about the fate of 10,000 Indians stranded in Saudi. But who would bring them back? Is it Sushma Swaraj, the trusted Lieutenant of Modi, opposition lead by Sonia Gandhi or the left government in Kerala State? By denying the diplomatic passport to Kerala government emissary, the Centre has made it clear who is at the helm. (The majority of stranded persons are from Kerala. No wonder General VK Singh, Minister of States for External Affairs who visited the labour camp was greeted with Inquilab Zindabad).
These people were stranded due to the expiry of Ikhama (work permit). At last Saudi gave consent to send back those who are stranded in India, at Saudi's expense. That expense part offered by them is something unique. And exit visa with a clause of returning to Saudi if found eligible was a classic move. Besides, Saudi is offering free medical aid and food to the stranded souls.
Sushma Swaraj was almost short of patting herself of the diplomatic victory telling that the exodus will start soon. And she was even taking credit for Saudi's goodwill of meeting the expenses.
Saudi Arabia, Swaraj said, has agreed to the Indian government's request to grant exit visas to the stranded worker.
The Indian Government will also assist the workers to get the salary and benefits due to them. The Indian Embassy in Riyadh will coordinate with the Labour office on this so that those stranded need not land in their native place empty handed. While thanking the Saudi Government on this gesture, Sushma Swaraj did not miss the opportunity to praise the recent visit of Modi to Saudi.
New life to the workers!