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22 Jun 2022

Nepali Times (Nepal)

Nepali worker toiled for five months without pay in Qatar before being sent by agent to Malaysia where he worked without days off for four years

Dan Tiego, Shutterstock (purchased)

"Close encounter with death", 21 Jun 2022

I came to Malaysia four years ago to work as a security guard. I guard condominiums and sometimes have to accompany visitors to their floors on the elevator. But I do not step out of the elevator. We are not allowed to.

I paid for my tickets to come to Malaysia, and my employer deducted 1,000 Ringgit over the course of two months from my salary. It may not sound as bad as what other migrants pay for these jobs but it was the deal I had struck with my agent.

He had previously sent me to Qatar as an electrician and after five months of not being paid, I returned. He deemed it cheaper to send me to Malaysia as a security guard than to repay the Rs95,000 I had paid for the job in Qatar. It took me 10 months to haggle with him, but it worked out eventually.

Every day for the past four years, I have worked for 12 hours, 30 days a month. I can send home over Rs40,000 a month, which for my family is a lot.

But I realised the fragility of our lives when my roommate, also a security guard, died a few months back.