Lebanon?Six of the seven thousand Nepali workers in Lebanon are women. The contracts under which they are employed mean that they are unable to change employers. According to sources in Lebanon, many Nepali women live effectively as prisoners of their employers, and some are also victims of physical and sexual abuse.
Sarada Phuyal who worked as domestic help in Beirut died on 17 March this year. Police reports say it was suicide but the Nepali community here is suspicious. On 21 March, Dilli Poudel, chairman of the Non-Resident Nepalis Association in Lebanon issued a press release saying that 12 hours before her death, Sarada had contacted a certain Mohan Prasai and told him that her mistress had checked her passport and she would be able to change her place of work.
A day before the death of Sarada, 32 year-old Kamala Nigari jumped from the fifth storey of a building. Although she survived, she broke both her legs. A few months ago, the dead body of Ganga Rana, who also committed suicide to escape abuse, was brought back to Nepal. Manamaya Giri has been reported missing since she asked for her wages. The list goes on.
These incidents provide only a glimpse of what Nepali workers in Lebanon are facing. No one is addressing our problems. The consulate should try harder to understand our situation or he should be replaced, says Dilli Poudel.
Most Nepali workers in Lebanon are simple labourers. Women working as domestic helps earn between $125-250 per month. However, they are often kept waiting for years before being paid.