Male and female workers from Bangladesh aspiring to work abroad are becoming victims of trafficking to Malaysia through ‘risky’ sea routes by boats.
Campaigners for protecting migrants’ rights expressed concern over the issue though the authorities in the government said that they were not aware about it.
‘All the preparations have been taken to repatriate on July 26 at least 17 Bangladeshi migrants now detained at the Langcap Immigration Camp in Perak , ’ Bangladesh High Commission in Kuala Lumpur said on July 15, in its official facebook status.
It said that Bangladesh High Commission officials visited the Langcap Immigration Camp in Perak and distributed travel passes and foods among the detained Bangladeshi migrants.
A BHC officials told New Age that the information posted in the Bangladesh High Commission’s Facebook was ‘authentic’.
According to the information posted on the Facebook two women of Bangladesh were among the 17 persons who were recently trafficked to Indonesia from Bangladesh through the sea route by boats.’
They were arrested by the Malaysian Immigration Police when they were
trying to enter into Malaysia, it says, adding that the traffickers were also detained.
The Bangladesh High Commission got a request from the Malaysian authorities to repatriate the 17 Bangladeshi victims of trafficking including the two women.
Expatriates Welfare and Overseas Employment Ministry joint secretary for monitoring and enforcement Md Najibul Islam told New Age on Tuesday that he was not aware that Bangladeshis were getting trafficked by sea.
He, however, said he would look into matter and take action.
‘Usually, we take action on the basis of information from intelligence agencies,’ he said.
Ovibashi Karmi Unnayan Program chairman Shakirul Islam described the information as ‘very worrisome.’
He said that it was the government’s responsibility to identify and bring the traffickers to book.
He said that to achieve Sustainable Development Goals the government was required to ensure safe, orderly and responsible migration.
Independent Peace Activist Pervez Siddiqui who makes films on migration issues said that it was an open secret that trafficking of Bangladeshi workers regularly takes place through the Bay of Bengal.
He asked the authorities to strengthen their vigil for curbing trafficking.
‘The presence of Rohinya people in Cox’s Bazar has made Bangladesh’s border security vulnerable,’ Pervez said from Ukhia, Cox’s Bazar.
Pervez who interviewed survivors of trafficking by boat in 2015 found many of them interested to go to Malaysia by sea.
According to recent media reports, Malaysia is setting up a special court to tackle rising numbers of human-trafficking cases in a move welcomed by campaigners who hope it will deliver justice to victims.
Source: New Age Bangladesh