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Posted On: 4 February 2009 09:29 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:09 pm

Western expats rush to the aid of stranded Nepalis

Khalifa Al Haroon
Khalifa Al Haroon
Your friendly neighborhood Qatari
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MOVED by the plight of the stranded Nepalese workers, whose story the Gulf Times reported yesterday, at least three Western expatriates contacted the office of the newspaper with offers of assistance. One of the readers, who identified herself as American national Dr Deborah Harteer, gave QR100 each to the 15 labourers living in a Najma flat without light and water for more than a fortnight. After contacting the newspaper’s office in the morning, Dr Harteer went to the Nepalese embassy where the workers’ group had gone seeking its intervention to settle the issue. The doctor handed over the assistance to each of the workers in the presence of Nepal’s Ambassador Suryanath Mishra. “How could one support himself if he doesn’t get enough to sustain himself,” she wondered. “I considered it my duty to support unfortunate people like this stranded group,” she said. Dr Harteer also promised to raise money for sending the affected workers home if the issue was not resolved, latest by next week. Reacting to the financial assistance given by the American national, the workers told this newspaper that they were overwhelmed by the aid, which they felt would be enough to pay for their food for the next five to six days. A woman working at Qatar Petroleum, identified as Rose Peuper from Australia said she was moved by the report and was ready to support the essential requirements of the affected workers, including food. Later, she spoke to envoy Mishra and expressed her desire to supply food to the workers this afternoon. Taimoore, a Canadian businessman, also promised assistance to the workers. Speaking to Gulf Times, the entrepreneur said it was very unfortunate indeed that the labourers were left stranded and rendered jobless by their own employers. The businessman said he was ever ready to provide assistance to the labourers and he gave his mobile number to the newspaper. While expressing his gratitude to those who extended support to the affected workers from Nepal, Ambassador Mishra said until Gulf Times reported the incident, not even the embassy had come to learn about the inhuman conditions in which they had been living. The envoy said even though the workers’ sponsor had agreed to send one of his representatives yesterday, none came to the embassy to sort out the issue. “The embassy waited for his arrival even in the evening. But nobody from the sponsor’s side came,” he said. Today, the workers’ case would be referred to the labour department, the ambassador said. Dr Deborah Harteer, if you manage to read this, send ILQ an email and we'd like to send you a goodie bag. For those 15 people you gave 100 QR to, ILQ will match it :)