In the midst of Pakistan’s economic crisis, there is concerning news about human trafficking. According to a report by Pakistani news outlet Dawn, the Senate Standing Committee on Overseas Pakistanis has revealed that a growing number of beggars from Pakistan are being trafficked abroad. During a discussion within the Senate panel on the migration of skilled and unskilled labor from Pakistan, Overseas Ministry Secretary Zulfikar Haider disclosed this information.
Mr. Haider stated that the problem of human trafficking is worsening because more beggars from Pakistan are traveling abroad. These beggars exploit pilgrim visas to enter countries such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Iraq. There is also a growing trend of beggars flying to Japan from Pakistan on flights bound for other destinations.
The secretary also mentioned that a majority of pickpockets caught inside holy sites like Haram are Pakistanis. Most beggars travel on Umrah visas and do not possess work visas. Japan has become a new destination for these visitors.
It was noted by Senator Rana Mehmoodul Hasan that Saudi Arabia now prefers skilled laborers over untrained workers. He also highlighted the demand for skilled workers in Japan, with India, Nepal, and Pakistan supplying varying numbers of individuals. Moreover, Senator Hasan mentioned the approximately 50,000 unemployed engineers in Pakistan.
In terms of the Middle East, Senator Hasan pointed out that there are approximately three million Pakistanis in Saudi Arabia, 1.5 million in the UAE, and around 200,000 in Qatar. Mr. Haider emphasized the need for collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and related agencies to assist Pakistani engineers in finding employment opportunities in countries like Japan and China, given the severe economic crisis.
Furthermore, Mr. Haider acknowledged the desperation among highly skilled professionals in Pakistan, who are willing to accept low salaries of Rs 15,000 to Rs 20,000 per month. Senator Zeeshan Khanzada supported Senator Mahmood’s viewpoint, highlighting the extreme desperation among the Pakistani population, some of whom are even willing to pay a significant amount for employment visas due to rampant inflation and recession.