Manpower swindles Rs 300 million, operator jailed for fraud
February 26, 2021 04:30 PM NPT
By: RUDRA KHADKA
KATHMANDU, Feb 26: Bheri Overseas Manpower has been found to have swindled youths out of Rs 300 million, promising them lucrative jobs abroad. The manpower has run a fraudulent business by luring more than 150 people claiming to send them to various European countries and Afghanistan.
According to Kumar Prasad Dahal, director general of the Department of Foreign Employment, so far 150 people have filed petitions demanding refund of the amount swindled by the manpower. “On the basis of the complaint, about Rs 300 million has to be recovered from the manpower,” he said.
Most of the victims are former employees of Nepal Army, Armed Police Force and Nepal Police. The manpower had demanded Rs 200,000 to Rs 1.5 million from each individual saying that they would be sent to various European countries including Portugal, Romania and Afghanistan. Former Armed Police Constable Madhu Kumar Thakuri, who paid Rs 300,000 to the manpower, said that the operators had lied about jobs abroad. He said they were told that their salary would be Rs 100,000 per month.
The manpower had said that Thakuri was required to pay a total of Rs 500,000. “Most of my acquaintances were ready to go for foreign employment by paying similar amounts to the manpower,” he said. “I worked in the Armed Police Force for 16 years. Finally I decided to leave my job and go abroad.”
The manpower had initially agreed to take the payment of Rs 300,000 from Thakuri and another Rs 200,000 after he reached Afghanistan. “After taking the money, the manpower sent me to Delhi, India,” he said. “After I was kept in Delhi for a week, I suspected that the manpower was up to something bad.”
Manpower operator Rameshwor Singh was arrested on charges of foreign employment fraud, while extorting large sums of money in the name of sending people to various European countries and Afghanistan. According to the department, he was arrested not for the same fraud but for other offenses of foreign employment. After Singh's arrest, the department found out that the manpower had not renewed its license.
“As the manpower company’s operation license has not been renewed, there is a problem of how to recover the money of the victims,” said Dahal. “Although the money was extorted using the name of the manpower, those doing the deed are different people.”
According to the victims, the manpower had started cheating the youths since 2017. Manpower has not been renewed since 2019. Dahal said that there is a bail of Rs 3 million for the manpower. “The amount of bail is not enough for the fraud of Rs 300 million,” he said.
Officials of the department said that the manpower has cheated the youth in a planned manner with wrong intention. “After swindling Rs 300 million, the operator was arrested but the company was found to have not renewed its license which shows that it had the intention of cheating the youths from the beginning,” said an official of the department.
The official said that the cases of fraud in the name of foreign employment will not decrease unless the manpower entrepreneurs follow the code of conduct and business.
The Foreign Employment Act stipulates that if a manpower company is found to have committed fraud in the name of foreign employment, it can be fined up to one and a half times more than the fraud it has committed and the person responsible will be imprisoned. The department can deduct the amount of fine from the deposit kept by the manpower.