Nip the job nexus

Fake job consultancy companies seem to be mushrooming which means, more and more youth are vulnerable to getting duped while seeking to make careers. A proper policy is needed to nip the nexus in its bud.

Mian Tufail

THE extreme commercialisation of education has been weighing heavy on students for quite some time now. Students pay hefty amounts to highly decorated educational institutions in the hope to earn handsomely in the future. Parents have been selling their properties and valuables to provide for children’s education. But the sad part is that even after good education, youngsters suffer a lot when it comes to finding good jobs. Apparently, every year, thousands of people from the Kashmir Valley move to the Middle East through third party consultancies which offer them jobs but which later turn out to be damp squibs. In a heartfelt video message on social media, Zahid Ahmad Shah, a young man from Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir, recently shared his ordeal. Talking to KC, Zahid, right now in Saudi Arabia, narrates how he has been duped on the pretext of a job by consultants in Kashmir. Says he: “I’m in Saudi Arabia from the last five months to secure a job for my livelihood and my family back home. Ishfaq Ahmad who runs Al-Mehrab Consultancy, offered me a job here. I paid Rs 1.5 lakh to him for the same. On reaching Saudi Arabia, I was kept confined in my accommodation with no job or salary. During the month of Ramzan, I was provided a job paying a meagre amount but was later laid off despite the contract being for two years. Now, I have been asked to vacate my accommodation and my travel documents have been withheld”, says he. Speaking how the nexus runs deep, he remarks that Kashmir-based consultancies work in collaboration with their counterparts in Mumbai and both are looting the gullible youth by offering them fake jobs.
He says, “The Al-Mehrab Consultancy collaborates with Mumbai-based Maula International
Consultancy. They carry out fancy interviews in Srinagar and select only those candidates who pay huge amounts of money. Since they portray legitimacy, the poor youth get badly trapped and once here, run from pillar to post but to no avail”. Zahid has requested the J&K administration to facilitate his return to the Valley as he’s running short of money, food and shelter now.

Zahid’s story isn’t a sole example. From labourers to engineers, teachers to medical students, a number of trained employees migrate to the Middle East countries like, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Kuwait to earn well but most of them find themselves duped by the third party consultancies. There’s another such story – of Aaqib Ahmad, a B Tech graduate from Chadoora, and a gold medallist. He worked hard to be an engineer in Dubai. He got in touch with a consultant – Reyaz Ahmad from Anantnag. Aaqib paid Rs 1.8 lakh to him for the job and the interview was conducted in Delhi. Informs
Aaqib: “Reyaz is himself a B Tech mechanical graduate and known to me. There was no doubt onhis credibility and authenticity. He promised me a job in Dubai and provided me the offer letter with my package. On inquiring, I came to know that the said company was non-existent in Dubai and hedespatched these offer letters to about 20 students by making them himself with proper seal, signature and logo of the company”. Aaqib went straight to Reyaz’s house where his octogenarian mother told him that she had broken all ties with her son after receiving a number of such complaints from various parents and children. Fearing shame and being laughed at by friends and family, Aaqib has been tight-lipped about this for the last four years and hasn’t shared the incident with anyone. He’s currently doing a business in engineering equipment and is earning well for his family. Says he, “I’m happy with my business; I have two employees to handle different affairs. But in today’s technologically-driven age, people still get trapped and lose their hard-earned money to such cheats. It’s a nexus running from Srinagar to Delhi to Mumbai”. A police officer, on condition of anonymity, informs KC that his office receives hundreds of such complaints every year. Says he: “We get some of these consultants arrested but in some cases there is no success. We carry out investigations on the basis of the complaints. In some cases, we apprehend these scammers but in most cases these people go scot free as they have migrated to different countries due to fear of arrest at home. In some cases, parents of the victim and the scammer reach a compromise”. The Jammu and Kashmir administration needs to formulate a policy to bring such consultancies under the purview of law as their rampant growth in the society points towards possibility of more gullible people falling prey. A proper policy and registration system will pluck the loopholes and will save the innocent from getting duped.


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