Two years ago I was away visiting Tonga, an exceptionally beautiful island in the Far East, which sees the first sun of the day because it is the closest country to International Date Line.
It was actually at International Date Line hotel that I stayed. When I came out after breakfast, I found a group of about fifty Chinese men squatting there. They were waiting for their supervisor to arrive. They were going to work on construction site, I was told. Who would have imagined that he would find migrant labour in a country whose name is not known to millions? But yes, they were there.
Something similar must be happening in Muscat or Dubai, I thought, when Indians go there for jobs. With millions not able to find a job in India, I never imagined that Chinese workers will arrive in India to do skilled as well as unskilled jobs! A report warned us a year ago that the Chinese are coming but nobody paid serious attention to it.
Now we cannot ignore it. The Outlook India article reports that over 25,000 Chinese workers are already working in India and that too in states such as Chhattisgarh where the unemployment is very high. Who are employing them? And where? And at what rate?
Rajiv Gandhi Thermal Power plant in Hissar, Haryana, many projects in West Bengal, Balco Plant, RIL’s Petroleum Projects, Adani’s Mundra Power Plant, Delhi Metro, Delhi International Airport are the employers. So we have both, private as well as Public sector units welcoming the Chinese workers.
They stay in AC housing, and get paid Rs. 1700 pd while our countrymen get Rs. 87 pd post deductions!
Foreign Capital is welcome, but foreign workers? Do we really require them? Can’t we develop our country men to do these jobs? Is anyone in Government aware what the ground reality is in this matter where foreign workers are brought on ‘Business visa’ and shown as skilled workers? In other countries, it is difficult to get a visa or work permit easily, one has to follow a long procedure.
The article on Outlook website has brought out some very disturbing facts of lack of Government Control.