Bhubaneswar, Oct 13: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has directed the administration to ensure the safe return of 35 Odia workers reported to be held captive in Laos.
As per the direction of Chief Minister, the Labour Commissioner has taken up the issue with Indian embassy at Laos. The Embassy authorities have informed that they are in touch with the labourers and all necessary steps will be taken for their safe return to India.
A group of 38 individuals hailing from Jaynagar panchayat in Kendrapara's Rajkanika block have found themselves in dire straits while working at a plywood company in Laos. Approximately one and a half months ago, the company abruptly ceased its operations, leaving the workers in a precarious situation.
These workers have claimed that the company's owner has not only failed to disburse their salaries for the past two months but has also prevented their return to their home country. Left destitute and stranded, they are now grappling with the challenges of survival while remaining confined to the company's premises.
In response to this distressing situation, the family members of these workers took the initiative to approach officials from the Labor Department on Thursday. They implored the authorities to take necessary actions to facilitate the safe repatriation of their loved ones. It has come to light that each of these young individuals had paid Rs 1.50 lakh for their transportation expenses, and they were lured by an agent's promise of a monthly salary amounting to Rs 70,000.