New Delhi: Taking up the cause of Indian nationals allegedly being kept in Saudi Arabia against their wishes, JD(U) MP Ali Anwar Ansari on Thursday demanded that the External Affairs Ministry take quick action to ensure their return.
At a press conference here, he also introduced a Bihar woman, who recently returned from the gulf country, as a "victim of torture and abuse" and accused Indian officials there of showing apathy to such cases.
Basanti Devi said she was put behind bars and suffered physical abuse and torture from her employers and local authorities as she made efforts to return to India after she found out that employment promises made to her were fake.
Ansari said Basanti's daughter Kanchan Devi remains in Saudi Arabia and they are making efforts to bring her back.
"The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) told me they were unaware about Basanti's details. Their ignorance is surprising as she has been through jail and had approached officials there as well. Our people are suffering so much and officials are just not doing their work," he said.
He alleged that a "nexus of brokers and officials" is at work which was exploiting Indian nationals in collusion with locals in Saudi Arabia.
"They are promised good money and perks but in reality they are treated like slaves and their passports and other documents are seized," Ansari alleged.
He, however, praised External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and said "she is making honest efforts".
Ansari also spoked about the "plight" of another Bihar resident Riyzuddin Khan there and said he had written to Swaraj about it.
Recently, about 40 such Indians returned home after the MEA took up the matter with Saudi authorities.