Stories of Change

Timely awareness and informed decision making of one aspirant saves other aspirants’ lives

Sonu (name changed), a resident of Ward No. 1 of Gyaspur of Siwan block from Siwan District of Bihar is a blue-collar migrant worker who has worked for 8 years earlier in GCC countries like Saudi Arab, Dubai and Oman. This time too Sonu planned to go to Dubai for work along with his other six friends from different villages (Rajpur, Gaighat, Rasulpur, Sitalpur, Hussain Ganj and Husaina Begaira). He collected the passports of all of his friends and submitted it to the Global Training Centre located at Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh which is not a registered Recruiting Agency. The agent promised them that they all will get work visa once they reach Abu Dhabi and will get jobs according to their skill sets. The agent demanded INR 60,000 from each of the migrants for providing tourist visas, to which all of them agreed.


Just a day before when Sonu was all set to go to Gorakhpur to pay the requested fee to the agent, he decided to call one of the Panchayat Facilitators to discuss. Our Panchayat facilitator immediately scrutinized the visas and the agency and informed him the Global Training Centre of Gorakhpur is not a registered Recruiting Agency and going for work on a tourist visa may end them up in forced labour conditions or deportation.


Sonu understood the situation that the agent is a fraud and making all the false promises with them, hence not paid a single penny to the agency.  Not only did Sonu and his six other friends refused to pay the fees to the agents but also cancelled their plan to migrate. In this way, they were able to save themselves from becoming in-debt to money lenders by paying a high rate of interest on the amount they would have borrowed to pay to the agent and also overcame illegal and unsafe migration.


Whatever happened with Sonu, is a regular practice where labour migrants came in the deceit of the illegal agents. As a consequence, NORAD and Global Fund to End Modern Salvery (GFEMS), in partnership with ASK came forward so that they can  empowered people regarding the safe migration process, which in result protect migrants from becoming the victim of forced labour conditions at the destination.