Several Bangladeshi workers arrested in Maldives
22 January 2016, Nirapad News: Maldives Immigration arrested Thursday dozens of expatriate workers, including several Bangladeshis, from the local market area in capital Male.
An immigration official said that the arrest of the Bangladeshi workers was part of an ongoing crackdown on undocumented migrant workers.
The department, however, did not give the exact number of expatriates arrested on Thursday.
Only Maldivians are allowed to work at the local market where products manufactured in the islands are sold. However, most of the stalls are occupied by expatriate workers, reports the haveeru.com.mv.
An eyewitness reporters seeing at least 20 expatriates being taken into custody from the local market area Thursday morning.
Undocumented migrant workers are held at a special centre in the capital city’s satellite suburb of Hulhumale before they are deported.
Early this month, the government began fining businesses that employed expatriates as cashiers. Although fines ranging from MVR10,000 to MVR50,000 can be levied, the government imposed an initial fine of MVR10,000.
According to the immigration, fines have been levied on 108 businesses so far and the sum has reached to MVR1,080,000.
Economic ministry in April declared illegal for any expatriate to work as a cashier in shops, cafés and restaurants. Immigration department had also stopped approving quotas for expatriates brought to Maldives for the purpose.
The crackdown on businesses employing expatriate cashiers was, however, halted last week.