An Indian woman who was stranded in the UAE for four months after being falsely declared an absconder by her former employer finally received an exit clearance from the authorities, which also refunded her Dh500 (Rs 9,351) absconder fee, according to a media report.
Bengaluru resident Geeta Krishnamurthy had come to the UAE on an employment visa in 2015 to work as an administrative executive in an IT firm. In January 2017, she went to India on vacation. While she was on her vacation, the company closed down due to which she didn't return to the UAE, the Gulf News reported yesterday.
In March this year, Krishnamurthy went to the UAE mission in India, got her employment visa cancelled and came to the UAE on a one-month visit visa to search for a job.
After unable to find a job, she decided to return to India on a turnaround visa' that enables expatriates to exit UAE's borders and re-enter the region on a renewed visit visa.
However, she was stopped at the Dubai airport on the ground that her previous employer had listed her as an absconder and she could not exit the country, the report said.
She approached the employer who demanded Dh10,000 (Rs 1,87,014) from her.
I just cried in distress. I was not an absconder, had my employment visa cancelled at the UAE mission in India, and had entered on a valid visit visa. Yet my local employer was trying to extort Dh10,000. I did not have that kind of money, the report quoted Krishnamurthy as saying.
She collected funds from her friends to hire a lawyer but it did not produce any result. I was ignorant of the law, had no money and was wondering how I would ever be reunited with my mother, husband and son," Krishnamurthy said.
Finally she approached the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA)-Dubai and paid Dh220 fine plus Dh520 to remove the absconder label from her file.
GDRFA-Dubai, which is part of the UAE's Ministry of Interior, is tasked with regulating the entry and of travellers to the UAE through the Emirate of Dubai.
After the GDRFA officers studied her case, they realised that she had cancelled her employment visa legitimately and had returned to the UAE on a visit visa. Within one hour, they gave her exit clearance and refunded her Dh500, the report said.
I return to my country with my head held high and cannot explain the rush of emotions I feel, Krishnamurthy said.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)