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Posted on Nov 13, 09:06AM | UNI
K C Joseph, Minister for Rural Development, Planning, Norka and I and PRd today said the government will provide legal assistance to the Kerallites, lodged at jails in Gulf countries.
Addressing a function organised by Norka for the distribution of welfare funds to the kin of Pravasis in Kannur and Kasargod district at Malabar residency hotel here, Mr Joseph said the government would provide local counsel of the Gulf countries to attend the cases of Kerallites who were sentenced at jails.
The government has directed the Embassies to obtain the numbers of jail inmates in Gulf countries, who wanted legal assistance. Indian lawyers are not eligible to attend the case in Gulf countries' courts due to technical problems, so the government is trying to remove this barrier by getting the assistance of lawyers there, he added.
Mr Joseph said hundreds of Malayalees are languishing in prisons in the Gulf countries and many of them have landed behind the bars for no fault of theirs.
The government is also considering a project to arrange free air tickets to poor pravasis, who face lack of funds to visit Kerala even after many years, Mr Joseph informed, adding that the government is also going ahead with the Air Kerala project to help Malayalee expatriates.
Mr Joseph also said the government would consider to implementing rehabilitation programmes for rehabilitation of Gulf returnees with the help of different pravasi organisations.
The government would also think of starting shipping services from the Gulf countries to help the poor pravasis who could not afford the air tickets, he said.
A pre-departure orientation programme was also organised as part of the programme.
Pravasi welfare board chairman P M A Salam and Chief Executive officer of Norka Noyal Thomas also attended the function.