Muscat: Two Indian expatriate labourers were allegedly "assaulted with an iron rod" by their foreman, who is also an Indian, in Amerat on Saturday night, for filing a complaint against him at the Labour Department.
"We were not receiving the salary we had been offered. We pleaded with him to give us what he had offered us during recruitment. But our repeated pleas fell on deaf ears," Shibu and Watson, the victims, alleged
"So, on Saturday, we approached the Indian embassy, and following their directions, we filed a complaint against the foreman at the Labour Department and returned to the camp. When the foreman and his brother found out about the complaint, they barged into our room and brutally assaulted us," they said.
Shibu and Watson were working as construction workers at the company, which is mainly run by the foreman and his family.
"The Arab sponsor is just a figurehead. We don't think he is aware of these issues. We didn't demand anything extra; we just wanted what he had offered us," Shibu, who was badly injured, said.
According to Shibu, the foreman and his brother had barged into his room at around 9p.m., and hit him with an iron rod.
"I was pushed down. The television set fell on my neck. He then started to set fire to our clothes and belongings. We grabbed whatever things we could and ran out of the room in fear of losing our lives," Shibu further alleged.
Watson, who came to Shibu's rescue, was also beaten up.
"We somehow came to Ruwi to seek help from the police by 10 pm. They directed us to file a complaint with the Amerat police station. As we were standing in front of Badr Al Sama with bleeding hands, some social workers came to help us. They took us to Amerat police station, and we filed a complaint, and according to the police officials' advice, we sought medical treatment at Khoula Hospital," the labourers said.
According to the labourers, the foreman had threatened to prevent them from returning to their home countries until their contracts had expired.
"It was shameful to hear of an Indian foreman beating up his fellow citizens," asserted Shameer PTK and Shaji Sebastin, Muscat-based social workers, who had helped the labourers at the police station and hospital.
"We hope the Indian embassy takes stringent action against such notorious foremen," the social workers added.
With the help of the social workers, the labourers approached officials at the Indian embassy, yesterday, seeking help and shelter.