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Indians in Saudi asked to get final exit visa

Dubai: Ahead of the July 3 amnesty deadline, India has asked its nationals living in Saudi Arabia, who have received their Emergency Certificates (ECs), to get their final exit visa immediately from the Saudi authorities.

The Indian embassy in Riyadh said that it has completed the process of issuing ECs to all those applicants who have verified their personal particulars with the mission.

The new Saudi Labour Law called 'Nitaqat' makes it mandatory for local companies to hire one Saudi national for every 10 migrant workers.

As a result, a number of people from foreign countries who were working without valid work permits and runaways have come under the scanner.

Once the three-month grace period for such workers to leave the country ends on July 3, all expatriates found in Saudi Arabia without valid papers will be jailed and heavily penalized.

The Indian embassy has been issuing Emergency Certificates to such nationals to enable them to leave Saudi Arabia. "All applicants who have submitted their EC applications in Dammam or nearby cities may collect their ECs from Indian International School, Dammam by June 30," the embassy said.

"In case they cannot collect their ECs by that day, they may visit Embassy of India, Riyadh on July 1 to collect the same," it added. Embassy officials deployed at various labour offices in Riyadh and Dammam and at Riyadh Airport will continue to be available at these places in the coming weeks.

As of May 20, 75,000 Indians had registered with the Indian Embassy in Riyadh and the Consulate in Jeddah to be processed and be send back with 'emergency certificate'. There are over two million Indians in Saudi Arabia.

Meanwhile, in view of the decision by Saudi Arabia to shift the weekend to Friday and Saturday, the Indian embassy too will observe working day from Sunday to Thursday starting July 1. Friday and Saturday will be holidays in consonance with the Saudi official working days.

(Agencies)

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