Ganjam: Two Odia workers stranded in Malaysia have been taken into custody by the police there for illegally staying in the country after expiry of their visas.
The news has spread panic among their families in India, and they have sought the intervention of the district administration.
Along with them are around 30 to 40 migrant workers from Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, reports said. The workers were in Malaysia even after their visas had expired.
The two Odia workers are Ganesh, 35, son of M Purushottam of Sribana village and Rankanidhi Pradhan, 38, son of Mohan Pradhan of Baroda village in Ganjam district.
According to sources, eight labourers had gone to work in Malaysia after being promised high wages and better facilities by a middleman, Biku Bisoyi of Sorada.
However, the workers were not paid their legitimate wages for over nine months. They were also made to work under extreme pressure. Their employers allegedly tortured them when they demanded their wages.
Six of the workers fled their workplace and returned home. However, Ganesh and Rankanidhi were held back by the employers and tortured.
After learning their plight, their families have approached the broker who had helped their transportation to Malaysia. The broker is reported to have promised to bring back the stranded youths, but fled after collecting Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000 from the families of the victims.
With no option left before them, the families approached sarpanch Prabhat Kumar Sethy who informed the collector about the incident. The victims’ families submitted a written memorandum to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, the Governor, Chhatrapur MLA Priyanshu Pradhan and the district labour officer.