Dubai: Awaiting relief from the government and authorities of India and Saudi Arabia, hundreds of Indians are stranded in Dubai after Saudi Arabia announced a temporary ban on non-citizens’ entry into the kingdom from 20 foreign countries.
Saudi Arabia announced the restriction after the kingdom witnessed a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases. Saudi-bound Indians who were eager to finish their 14-day quarantine in Dubai in order to enter the country are now hit by uncertainty due to the sudden ban.
The passengers had arrived in UAE after the restrictions imposed by Saudi stated foreigners can't enter until they undergo a 14-day quarantine in any of the neighboring countries like UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, etc.
Ever since the imposition of the restriction, passengers are left high and dry in UAE with neither the Indian nor Saudi government authorities paying heed to their hues and cries. Most of the passengers who fall into the ‘blue-collar employees’ are now running out of finances and resources to afford an extended stay in Dubai.
PA Hameed, an advocate and social worker in Riyadh, has written a letter to External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar seeking his intervention and has also tagged Prime Minister Narendra Modi in multiple tweets to bring the issue to his notice.
The letter says those stranded include families, children, and pregnant women. "Some Indian residents in Saudi Arabia who traveled to Dubai a couple of days back to fetch their families and relatives are also stranded due to the sudden development. All of them are in a hapless situation and are pleading for immediate help from the Indian government," it said.
Recently, both Indian Embassies in UAE & Saudi Arabia issued an advisory to the people stranded in Dubai to return back to India. Hameed said the move was unexpected and unusual, asking people to go back to India is the last thing the government should be doing. The embassy should try and come with a plan and diplomatic dialogue insisting the Saudi authorities to allow these stranded Indians into the kingdom.
“"I request the Government of India & other concerned authorities to look into this issue immediately & to facilitate them to be landed in Saudi Arabia by effecting diplomatic consultations with the Saudi Arabian Government in this regard,” he said.
Several passengers who are stranded in UAE have called for help adding that they have run out of money for an extended stay. Many of them have also added that they had to resort to taking loans to facilitate their journey to Saudi Arabia via Dubai for quarantine and now they’re left with uncertainty as there is no guarantee when Saudi will lift the temporary ban.
“We can only hope that the Indian government bails us out from the crisis” one of the stranded passengers Sufyan who hails from Mangaluru said.
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Los Angeles, Sep 24: Hollywood star John Cusack on Saturday extended his support to Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's Bharat Jodo Yatra and said he stands in solidarity with "anti-fascists everywhere".
Cusack, the star of blockbusters such as "Serendipity", "High Fidelity", "Con Air" and "2012", has been vocal about various global issues on social media.
Taking to Twitter, the 56-year-old actor wrote, "Indian parliament member Rahul Gandhi is walking to Kashmir - from Kerala."
After a user thanked Cusack for supporting Gandhi's campaign, the actor said, "Yes - solidarity - to all anti fascists everywhere!"
The actor had earlier extended support to the farmers' protests against three farm laws and to the students protesting against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
The Congress' Bharat Jodo Yatra will cover 3,570 km in 150 days. It started from Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu on September 7 and will conclude in Jammu and Kashmir.
The yatra, which entered Kerala on the evening of September 10, will go through the state covering 450 km, touching seven districts in 19 days before entering Karnataka on October 1.
Indian parliament member Rahul Gandhi is walking to Kashmir - from Kerala -— John Cusack (@johncusack) September 23, 2022