The Indian Consulate in Dubai states that as per information available to them, at least 12 Indians have been arrested in the UAE after crossing the border illegally from Oman.
According to the consulate, the illegal expatriates are from Oman and were lured across the border by human traffickers who promised them access to the UAE amnesty scheme for illegal expats once they got here.
Indian expatriate who paid traffickers to smuggle him over the border recounts his tale
Illegal route to freedom
At least one Indian expatriate who was living illegally in Oman claims he crossed the border into the UAE, was arrested, but then sent back home after three months in jail under the last amnesty scheme in the Emirates.
According to the man from Kerala, who requested anonymity, people without a passport or valid visa or documents and with legal complications are allegedly smuggled into the UAE for a payment of Oman rial 300 (Dh3,000).
A report in The Muscat Daily quoted the man as saying: “We were produced in court, which sentenced us to two months in jail for entering the country illegally.
“The amnesty scheme at the time was announced and it finally took me more than three months to reach home.”
According to the man, agents in Ruwi, Muscat, promised him he would reach Kerala, safely, in 10 days’ time.
The victim, who is currently in Kerala, says he was asked to climb mountains for eight hours, after being smuggled into Buraimi, along with fourteen other people.
However, the moment he entered the UAE, the police arrested him.
His agents seemed to have expected this and told him to say that he came to the UAE by boat from Iran.
“It is not known whether illegal migrants from other neighbouring countries can avail of the amnesty scheme, but only people who can prove their legal entry into the UAE can avail of the amnesty scheme,” said a social worker, handling such cases.
Amnesty from today
Tighter security at Buraimi and Hatta have been enhanced to control illegal migrants from entering the UAE.
The UAE amnesty scheme, which starts today will run up to February 3, 2012.
“We have a total record of 14 Indians from Oman who are in UAE jails. They were caught by the police while trying to cross in to the UAE. These people are victims of a new racket that lures illegal expatriates from Oman to the UAE, to utilise the amnesty scheme,” a consulate official told this website.
The official added: “We don’t know whether people from other Gulf countries enter the UAE as well, but people from Oman have been caught.”
The Indian Consulate in Dubai issues out-passes to help these illegals leave the country, after serving their jail sentences.