By SAT News Desk
MELBOURNE, 2 February 2020: Lakhs of people from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh work as laborers in Punjab, and lakhs of Punjabis continue to migrate to other countries the world over to work often at low wages. A story ‘Clandestine employment of Indians in Italy’ – 2018 by DW (German Public Broadcast service) Documentary, available on YouTube, is revealing and exposes the massive supply of cheap labor from Punjab, India to Italy to work in its agricultural sector.
The rather paradoxical hate-filled issue of ‘illegal’ migrants allegedly from neighboring Bangladesh to India has been headline news after amendments to its citizenship act and the plan for a citizen’s register. But the flow of illegal labor to other countries doesn’t seem to be on the agenda of New Delhi. This 12 minutes DW news documentary is quite revealing exposing the trial of organized human exploitation and trafficking from India.
It reveals, there are about 18,000 Indian illegal workers (mainly Sikhs from Punjab) who are working in vegetable and other fields in Latina, in Italy’s Lazio region. They are paid around Euro 3.50 to five per hour, which is much lower hen the official wage of around 7 Euros per hour. These Punjabis work seven days a week and have almost no contact with the mainstream Italians.
The documentary says most of these people paid thousands of to human traffickers, have fake passports, fake visas or travel documents, driving licenses etc. The employers and they themselves are part of the illegal system operating for this unlawful employment where the end product is exported to other countries. Workers do not speak out of fear of losing their jobs and deportation to India.
Opinions are mixed with some feeling it is better to work this way than to be on welfare or be jobless in the home country of 1.3 billion people. Others, feel this is sheer exploitation with human traffickers making big money from these people coming from India’s premier agriculture state- Punjab. Do the Governments in Punjab or New Delhi care?
There is one thing for sure, no one wants to go back to India, the documentary says.
Documentary link – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MaQs3AjhdI