Malaysia preparing memorandum for Indian workers

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Singapore, Mar 23 (UNI) Malaysia's newly appointed ethnic Indian Minister Dr S. Subramaniam said a memorandum was being prepared relating to Indian nationals working in Malaysia.

Speaking in Kuala Lumpur yesterday, Dr Subramaniam said India's concern about Indian workers employment conditions in Malaysia and stressed that the matter was in the final stages. India is working with Malaysia on setting up working contracts for Indian nationals employed in Malaysia.

The Minister said he would be looking into human rights issues concerning foreign workers. "We will be looking into this issue. For these workers, it is our responsibility to give them good and fair working conditions and ensure that they get their due rights," said Dr Subramaniam.

Indians, both professionals and unskilled labour for the construction sector, are among the biggest groups of foreign workers in Malaysia. Meanwhile, the Malaysian Immigration Department has detained 130 foreigners including 15 women from a main market in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

The department's enforcement chief Ishak Mohamad said 65 of them were Bangladeshis, 26 were Indonesians, 21 were Myanmar nationals, seven were Indians, seven were Nepalese, two were Vietnamese and one was a Thai. "They were held for various offences including abusing their work permits, overstaying and not having any travel documents," the Malaysian national news agency Bernama quoted Mr Ishak as saying.

Malaysia's booming construction and plantation sectors are heavily dependent on foreign workers.

UNI XC NC VP0750

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