Yusuf bin Mohamad Al-Hail, ambassador of the State of Qatar to Nepal.File photo: Republica
Qatar Embassy and the ambassador in Kathmandu also accused of providing ‘tacit’ support to promote syndicate
KATHMANDU, Nov 27: The recent raids by the Department of Foreign Employment (DoFE) have exposed a ‘syndicate’ of recruitment agencies to supply Nepali workers to Qatar by flouting government regulations with a ‘tacit support’ from the Embassy of Qatar in Kathmandu.
Though the Department of Foreign Employment (DoFE) had raided four recruiting agencies who were conducting interviews to recruit workers for Qatar without taking permission, it is now facing pressure to halt the investigation, according to a senior official at the department.
Earlier on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, the DoFE had carried out monitoring the venue of interviews by four manpower firms conducting interviews of over a thousand youths for employment in Qatar.
The DoFE found SoS Manpower Services Pvt Ltd, DD Human Resources Pvt Ltd, Hope International and Shikhar International Manpower Services of conducting interviews of over a thousand Nepali youths for employment in Qatar without acquiring the pre approval as required by the laws and regulations.
While it confiscated all the files and documents and instructed them to stop the interview process, it has now turned reluctant to further take actions against them.
According to a source at the DoFE, it has been facing pressure from ‘powerful’ groups to halt the investigation into the case.
The latest raids that found the unauthorized recruitment attempts of some manpower companies comes in the wake of complaints from Nepal Association of Foreign Employment Agencies (NAFEA) that Qatar was selecting some handful agencies for the recruitment of hundreds of workers to work as security guards for the FIFA World Cup that it is hosting in 2022.
Opposing the syndicate that allows only some handpicked recruitment agencies to supply workers to Qatar, the NAFEA has been demanding a competitive and transparent process to choose manpower agencies.
Not only the recruitment agencies that were found to be interviewing aspiring workers were handpicked by Qatar, none of them has acquired required pre-approval from the DoFE.
The Embassy of Qatar in Kathmandu has also been drawn into controversy for promoting the syndicate of recruiting firms to send Nepali workers as security guards to Qatar. A vehicle of the Qatar Embassy was also found in one of the interview spots. Sources say Yusuf bin Mohamad Al-Hail, ambassador of the State of Qatar to Nepal is personally involved in the recent recruitment of Nepali workers.
“The monitoring team mobilized by the department has found that these manpower companies without taking pre approval for recruitment of workers were conducting interviews of workers to send them to Qatar,” said Bholanath Guragain, the spokesperson of the DoFE. “The vehicle with a blue number plate belonging to foreign mission was also found. We have informed this matter to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” he said.
According to Guragain, the preliminary report of the monitoring teams found that the interviews were being conducted purportedly to send security guards in Qatar without taking required pre approval from the department.
“We have sought clarifications from those manpower agencies. We will decide on further legal actions against them after we receive the full report from monitoring teams,” he added.
The Embassy of Qatar, however, denied any involvement in promoting the syndicate or picking manpower agencies for the recruitment of workers.