Indian schoolchildren write on a poster board, "We pray to God that stranded Indians should return safely."
The governments of Saudi Arabia and Qatar, who have backed ISIS and other terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq, should be held responsible in the international court of public opinion if any harm is done to these workers from India. The leaders of Jordan, Turkey, and the U.S. must use all the leverage they have with these terrorists, which is not minimal, to allow for the safe passage of these stranded workers back to their home country. And, of course, the governments of Iraq and India are also responsible, but that's obvious.
The sad fact is that the government of Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf monarchies could care less about the fate of these Indian workers who are seeking safety from their power-tripping henchmen. These governments treat workers from India, Bangladesh, and other countries in Southeast Asia as worse than slaves. Read this 2006 report from Human Rights Watch about the UAE's abuse of migrant construction workers.
An excerpt from, "ISIS playing deadly game with Indian workers" by Rohan Dua, The Times of India, June 22, 2014:
The ISIS militants have started playing a deadly game of life and death with migrant workers, including Indians in Iraq. Workers are randomly asked to give the meaning of Arabic words. The punishment for wrong answer is being made live target for militants' shooting practice. The other is being forced into performing humiliating tasks.The ironic thing is that most of these ISIS terrorists who are commanding these workers to speak Arabic aren't even Arab or Iraqi. A lot of them are Chechnyan, Afghan, Pakistani, Tunisian, and European nationals. They are the ones who are disrespecting the local culture and insulting Iraq.
TOI spoke to some of the Punjabi men on phone in the city of Dujail, about 70 km northwest of Baghdad. They narrated the tale of a youth from Nawanshahar district in Punjab. He was pulled out of a bus near Dujail by the militants and asked to guess an Arabic word. When he failed, he was shot at. Although he survived, he had to be treated for bullet wounds. The incident, three days back, has left the workers terrified.
"They came to us asking about our religious beliefs and told us to support Sunnis in Iraq," A Punjabi youth told TOI. "They then took us into their bus and asked us to participate in their game. They would give us a few words to read in Arabic and ask if we could tell the meanings. Those who failed were punished. They insisted that the language and culture of Iraq must be respected if we were to work here."
Besides shooting, the punishment included bathing the militants and washing their clothes and footwear. The militants also asked intimidating questions about their beliefs at gunpoint. "They checked our breath to know if we were sober," said another youth. The militants raided their temporary shelters to check for beer cans and whisky bottles.
Video Title: Hundreds of Indians stranded in Iraq without help. Source: newsxlive. Date Published: June 21, 2014. Description:
Evidence has emerged which suggests that several hundred Indian nationals may be stranded in the Najaf province of Iraq, unable to return home because their employer refuses to return their passports, said Amnesty International India on Saturday.