A month after Human Rights Watch issued a detailed report documenting the widespread human rights abuses that occur here, little has changed, Qatar-based Vani Saraswathi finds.
The country’s labor class continues to live in cramped quarters, paid low wages and are subject to exploitation due to the kafala system.
Saraswathi reports in the Hindu Business Line:
Though the government did cooperate with HRW during the research, the response post-publication seems lukewarm. “After the report’s release, the government has made it clear that it won’t rush policy change, especially in the case of the Kafala (sponsorship) system,” says (HRW report author, Cairo-based Priyanka Motaparthy)…
She adds: “We will follow up with the (Qatar) government, and put pressure till the necessary action is taken.”
HRW says it hopes that the international scrutiny on Qatar in the run-up to the 2022 World Cup will help push progress forward.
Saraswathi says “Until then, the hundreds of thousands of Asian workers will continue working here on a wing and a prayer.”
Credit: Photo by Habeeb Abu-Futtaim