Over 1,600 labour rule violations caught as LMRA steps up inspections | THE DAILY TRIBUNE | KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN

Over 1,600 labour rule violations caught as LMRA steps up inspections

TDT | Manama                  

The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com  

Staff Reporter

More than 1,600 labour rule violations have been found by the Labour Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA) which has been carrying out many inspections across the Kingdom.

It is learnt that LMRA collected BD409,000 in fines and many illegal workers were arrested. Meanwhile, 570 cases have been referred to the Public Prosecution. Many illegal workers arrested as part of the crackdown, now face deportation proceedings.

These arrested individuals were found to have committed many violations related to the provisions of the LMRA and residency laws in the Kingdom. LMRA Chief Executive Officer Nouf Jamsheer said the authority will intensify campaigns across the Kingdom spanning worksites and worker gathering points to ensure that the labour rules are not flouted by anyone.

“The authority has carried out more than 18,000 inspection visits. It has also carried out inspection campaigns along with Nationality, Passport and Residency Affairs.” She said that 916 workers were deported after being found guilty of violating the labour laws.

The Daily Tribune earlier reported about illegal employment of expatriates, who arrive in the Kingdom on visit visas, posing a serious threat to the Kingdom’s labour sector. According to NPRA official Talal Taqi, the crackdown will be intensified in the coming days as part of efforts to keep the labour and immigration sector safe from the violators.

Speaking to The Daily Tribune, a source closely associated with the tours and travels sector said a large number of violators of labour rules in the Kingdom are those who have arrived under ‘one year multiple entry visa’.

“The one year multiple entry visa can be obtained by an applicant staying outside the Kingdom. The visa costs BD16 for one month and its validity is 90 days, which could be extended up to one year by exiting the country once in three months.

“Many violators would arrive in the Kingdom under this visa and approach potential employers, mainly small-scale business owners, who employ them after considering it to be a less expensive option compared to the legal LMRA channel.”

He said these small-scale business owners are now paying high prices for committing this illegal act after their workers were detained for taking up illegal employment. Under the rules mentioned for this specific type of visa applicants, taking up paid or unpaid employment is absolutely illegal.

The applicants should also have BD300 with them upon entry in the Kingdom to meet their expenses. The source said that there are many agents in South Asian countries including India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, who “trick on innocent, uneducated clients” into believing that they are buying a job visa having legal authenticity to work under any employer in the Kingdom.

Many vulnerable youngsters from South Asian countries, who are potential jobseekers in the Kingdom, are increasingly falling victim to visa fraudsters. The Daily Tribune has learnt that under the pretext of handing over employment visas “visit visas are sold to many youngsters taking amounts ranging between BD700 and BD1,200 from them”.