Kolkata: It had been almost 15-20 days since Abdul Hossain had not contacted his parents, who reside in Koytha Village at Nalhati, Birbhum district of West Bengal. The worried parents were pinning their hope to get a call from their son, when a group of social activists landed at their doorstep with a clipping sent by Hossain, which told a different story.
Hossain, a civil engineer in search of better earnings, without informing his parents had bagged a job with a company in Baku, capital of Azerbaijan, through a travel agent. “The video shared by Abdul, narrates a scary tale, where not just him but around 160 Indians (45 from West Bengal) have been put behind the bar by the Azerbanian police,” informed social activist Samirul Islam, who runs Bangla Sanskriti Mancha, a Kolkata-based non-profit organization.
Speaking to eNewsroom, Abdul’s mother, Anarban Bibi, said, “It’s been almost 15 days since we had last talked to him. He had told that he was in Kolkata for some training. I am clueless about how my son went to Baku.” Amid sobs she added, “I came to know about his condition through these social activists. Please help me bring back my son.”
The video shows a huge number of Indians locked together in a single jail room, where the police provides them only a single meal for the day and are forced to work for long hours. According to Abdul, he along with his group with the help of some travel agents, who only turned out to be touts, peddling them to a foreign country, without relevant documents. On reaching Azerbaijan, they were kept locked in a room in Baku and were not assigned any work. On realizing that they had been cheated they approached the Indian Embassy. “Following which police even arrested touts not just from India but also from Pakistan and Bangladesh, who were involved in this case. In the video, he is even seen addressing the Prime Minister of India and West Bengal government to help them come back to India,” said Samirul.
Identity of those touts arrested was revealed by Abdul in the video – Sakir Khan from Mumbai, Allarakkha Khan from Nadia of West Bengal,Sajid Khan from Pakistan,Paresh Sahanawaz and Allimuddin from Delhi and one unidentified tout. According to Abdul, he along with Shubho Ghosh,Tanmoy Biswas,Shyamal Chakrabarty,Kalyan Mondal,Sanjit Mondal,Ratan Sharma,Sharuk Khan,Haradhan,Manjarul, Kabirul and Peudip from Nadia have been detained in Baku since January 31.
The parents have written a letter to the SDO of Birbhum, asking them to do the needful to bring back the Indians detained in Baku. Islam, added, “Our NGO has sent off a three-member team to the boys village to provide legal assistance and any other help to the family.” eNewsroom tried contacting the SDO but the calls remained unattended.