According to media reports and Indian government figures published on February 17, 2014 more than 1000 Indians working in Qatar have died in the past two years, obtained by news wire AFP under right of information laws According to the Indian embassy in Qatar, 237 workers died in 2012 and 218 in 2013. The figures follow similar data revealed to AFP by the Nepalese embassy in Doha last month, showing 191 deaths recorded in 2013, with many of them from “unnatural” heart failure, compared with 169 the year before. The Indian embassy did not give details about the circumstances of the deaths.
Sikhs worldwide had called to boycott Qatar Airlines due to a high number of Punjabi deaths in the country.
After the Guardian Newspaper published a report on Jitendar Singh Khalsa’s death in Qatar, many became aware of the widespread problem of migrant worker deaths in Qatar.
An agency based in Jalandhar has fooled thousands of Punjabis who’ve migrated to Qatar for a better life. However, once they arrived in the country they realized that the poor working conditions are leading to widespread deaths.
An Amnesty International report published by TOI revalede the following stats:
“According to figures released by the London-based human rights body, 279 Indian migrant workers died in Qatar in 2014. These figures are of migrant worker deaths from all causes, including fatalities not directly related to labour conditions.
“441 number of migrant workers from India and Nepal, the largest migrant worker sending countries, who died in Qatar in 2014,” says the report, that puts the number of Nepalese deaths at 162.”
An AFP report showed that the numbers are actually even higher:
“Almost 1,000 Indians have died in Qatar in the last four years since 2014, with over 500 workers dying in the past two- and-a-half years alone, according to an AFP report. Qatar is the host of the 2022 football World Cup.”
A look at how working conditions has lead to deaths in other countries in comparison with Qatar.
TNN reveals a high Indian population in Qatar:
“The Indian community in Qatar is the single-largest expatriate group. According to the foreign ministry, at the end of 2012, the number of Indians there was estimated at close to 500,000, approximately 26% of Qatar’s population of 1.9 million. The majority of Indians in Qatar is engaged in unskilled and semi-skilled work and belongs to low or lower-middle income groups. tnn”
The Guardian highlighted that the deaths is primarily due to preparations of the 2022 World Cup:
“Jim Murphy, the shadow international development secretary, said: “Preparations for the 2022 World Cup cannot go on like this – the trickle of worrying reports from the construction sites of Qatar has become a torrent.
“Some of the practices we know are taking place in Qatar amount to forced labour, and there are widespread concerns that the death toll could reach well into the thousands if nothing is done.”
Another alarming figures revealed by the Guardian shows:
“7,000 The number of migrant workers who will die on World Cup-related projects by the time the 2022 tournament gets under way, according to the International Trade Union Confederation.”
Readers are encouraged to see the report by the Guardian: The Guardian
A live Mint report showed that hundreds of Punjabis were also victims: The Live Mint