Author Archive of Kawsar

Life in Qatar as a migrant worker: What it costs to build a World Cup

Abdus Sattar wept as he explained his decision to his pregnant wife. He would be gone for years - missing the birth of his first child Dhaka was Abdus' home. He grew up there among the Bangladeshi capital's vast urban sprawl. The sights and smells of its thronging streets were all he had ever known. Never once, did the idea of leaving cross his mind. But over the course of his lifetime, Dhaka's population grew dramatically - more than trebling from

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Column by Mahfuz Anam: At every step, they are exploited, mistreated and humiliated

By: Mahfuz Anam Expatriate workers are our goose of Aesop's Fables that lays the golden eggs. And they do so year after year, without any help from us, and in spite of the constant humiliation we subject them to. From 2016 to 2019, the average annual remittance (Jan-Dec) flow was USD 15.25 billion. In 2020, it rose to USD 21.7 billion. For the first four months of the current year (January to April 2021), we have so far received USD 7.7 billion.

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‘Bureaucratic bottlenecks, poor services bar diaspora from investing in Bangladesh’

Bangladesh needs to improve its services and remove ‘bureaucratic’ barriers that discourage foreign investors to overcome challenges during the Covid-19 period, according to Bangladeshi diaspora based in Europe. Netherlands-based Bangladeshi diaspora organisation BASUG International Chairman Bikash Chowdhury Barua said there were complaints about poor services at the Bangladesh Bank, the Commerce Ministry, and the National Board of Revenue. “The

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Dutch postpone Qatar trade mission over World Cup worker concerns

The Dutch government has postponed a trade mission to Qatar this month, citing concern over the living conditions of migrant workers helping the Gulf state to prepare for next year's football World Cup. Britain's Guardian newspaper last week reported that its calculations showed that at least 6,500 migrant workers had died in Qatar since it won the right to stage the 2022 World Cup 10 years ago. Many of them worked on World Cup projects, a labour

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New trafficking route to Europe via Togo!

Md Owasim Uddin Bhuyan A group of Bangladeshi nationals were trafficked to the West African country of Togo by air, lured by their possible entry to Italy in Europe, according to victims and rights activists. Organised rackets, including Bangladeshis and foreign nationals, were involved with the trafficking of the Bangladeshis, they said. At least four Bangladeshis were recently rescued in Lome, the capital city of the African country. They were

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Refugee Relocation: Don’t undermine or misinterpret genuine efforts

Govt tells UN, int’l community, hopes they will join the process The government has urged all not to undermine or misinterpret its genuine efforts to improve the lives of Rohingya refugees through their ongoing relocation to Bhasan Char. It relocated 1,642 Rohingyas to the island in the Bay of Bengal under Noakhali's Hatiya upazila yesterday. The UN said that it has limited information and has not been involved in the relocation exercise, while

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Remittance crosses US $2b in November too

For the fourth time this year, Bangladeshis expatriates have sent remittance of over US $2 billion, despite the global economic fallout due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The amount of remittance sent by expatriates in the just-concluded November was US $2,078.74 million, which is 33.63 percent up from the same period last year. In November last year, it was US $1,555.23 million. Migrant workers remitted $2.11 billion in October this year, which was much

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Pandemic-Hit Overseas Job: Returnees see bleak future

2.72 lakh returned in 7 months; govt efforts for their economic reintegration fail to yield expected outcome After years of struggle, Mostakim Alam landed a job at a digital printing shop in Kuwait as a computer operator. With earnings of Tk 1.20 lakh a month, all was going well. Then came the novel coronavirus, bringing with it a sudden and impactful cascade of disruptions to his life. Losing the job, he eventually returned home in May from the

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Have we forgotten the Bangladeshis trapped in Velika Kladusa?

Desperation, uncertainties, and the exploitation of the vulnerable By: Tasneem Tayeb If someone looks up Velika Kladusa on Pinterest, they'll find lovely photos of the town and its beautiful landscape. Pretty as it may be, this little known town, in the far northwest of Bosnia and Herzegovina, has been in the news in the recent past for all the wrong reasons. Hundreds of migrants hoping to make their fortune in rich European countries such as Italy

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BCSM seeks help for Bangladeshis stranded at Croatia-Bosnia border

Bangladesh Civil Society for Migrants today expressed grave concern at the wretched condition of several hundred Bangladeshis stranded in different locations near the Croatia-Bosnia border. In a statement, BCSM, a platform of leading civil society organisations in Bangladesh working on migration, urged the Bosnian government to provide food, shelter, and emergency medical services to protect them from the coronavirus pandemic and the cold weather.

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