Karnataka sailor abandoned by employers in Iran stranded for 19 months
The sailor has had no contact in the past six months with the owners of the vessel or the agency that won him the post, and has still not been paid.
A 31-year-old man from Bhatkal in Karnataka who left for Iran to work as a sailor on a freighter remained stranded in port for 19 months. The sailor has had no contact for six months either with the owners of the ship or with the agency which found him the post. The situation forced Yaseen Shah to live near the quay of Khorramshahr port in Iran.
Yaseen landed in Iran in January 2020 but due to the effects of the pandemic the ship (Payam 2) IMO 8748452 he was working on did not leave the port in Iran. Yaseen has not received a salary for over a year and the Iranian agent who recruited him retained his passport.
Speaking to TNM, Yaseen alleged that his contract was changed when he arrived in Iran and he refused to sign the contract because the salary had increased from $ 200 per month to $ 150 per month. “It was not the salary we agreed to when I left India and my contract was finally concluded without a seal. This is one of the reasons the company does not pay me,” explains Yaseen. He says the company offered to fire him on a flight six months ago but he refused to leave without receiving his due salary.
According to Yaseen, he is owed $ 3,800 (Rs 2.83 lakh), but the Iranian agent said he would only be paid $ 2,800 (Rs 2.12 lakh). However, he has not received anything yet.
“The ship was anchored last year due to the pandemic and eventually the shipowners and the agency stopped communicating with me,” Yaseen said. He says many people from India are duped into this line of work by Iranian agents drafting contracts in a foreign language. He says he wants to fight for his salary and intends to come back with all the money he is owed.
“Nothing can bring back the last 19 months. I have missed two Ramzan and two Bakrid in the last two years. I keep telling my family that I will be back soon but I want to come back with the salary because I don’t I haven’t sent money to my parents and family, ”Yaseen says.
His visa has expired and says he is currently managing food and expenses with the help of odd jobs and with the help of others in the area.
Many organizations are trying to help Yaseen. Shirali Shaikh Muzaffer, founding president of Aim India Forum, said contact has been made with the Indian Embassy in Iran. “I ask the Indian mission, in view of its sanity, to kindly speed up its repatriation from Iran to India as soon as possible,” Shirali wrote in a letter to the Indian consulate in Iran.
Yaseen’s work profile was that of an ordinary sailor. In this job profile, he may take on a variety of roles on the vessel including repair, painting, engine room work and other roles in preparation for navigation.