Thursday, September 5, 2013

Nepali migrant workers abroad

One of the primary causes of the crises in the world is unemployment. Going to office is not the luxury of hundreds of thousands of people in Nepal. Some go to fields as they are farmers, and some go for cleaning jobs as they are cleaners. A friend of mine who resides in Europe goes nowhere, even though he is highly qualified.

Life is constant, but life experiences are changing. Work is not there forever, and it’s also changing. Various types of work are done by migrant workers abroad, especially from Nepal.

The life and condition of Nepali migrant workers are something that our intellectuals should study in the longer run. This is because there are many variables to check and ascertain. Take, for example, the destination country, type of work, pay system, benefits, hourly or weekly wages, health or social benefits, and working conditions. Do you know that half of the people who work abroad are working below their capabilities? 

It is one thing to keep up with friends and family; it is entirely another thing to be a worker abroad. There are ups and there are downs, but good people are everywhere around the globe. A friend of mine who lost his PhD job some six months ago was unemployed in Europe. He told me that life is full of struggle, and he had to apply for numerous jobs every day. However, he is not only competing with third-world migrants but also with many high profile and first-world workers of the West. There are barriers for him to get a job. Surely, there are language barriers too. 

Many countries in Europe try to promote their own languages. For example, you must speak German to live and work in Germany. There is also the work type. For example, if Mr. Jack or John is applying for an engineering post, and simultaneously, Mr. Hari or Shankar is applying for the same post, then you know who will be selected or asked for interviews. This is not to say that there is racial and ethnic discrimination, no, there are none (maybe a few). How can there be such a thing in well-developed, well-educated, and techno-obsessive (or obese) society? A friend of mine also taught me a sad but an inspirational lesson. Why it’s always going like this: those who are rich and powerful can easily dominate and manipulate those at the bottom. 

The fact of the matter is: migrant workers from developing or less developed countries like Nepal, Pakistan, Bhutan, Ghana, Uganda, Somalia, and others are more likely to be dominated and discriminated than others. This is not a scientific result but a formal observation from an intellectual friend of mine who is still unemployed in Europe.

Published: The Himalayan Times