15,000 Pakistanis in Saudi Arabia Apply Online for Return to Pakistan

FOUZIA KHAN: More than 15,000 Pakistani’s have registered through Pakistan consulate and Pakistan Embassy registration portal to go back home until Saturday 2 May 2020.

Mr. Khalid Majid, Pakistan Consul General said since (20th March) the online registration portal was introduced over 15,000 Pakistanis, mostly on short term visas, final exits, medical issues and emergency, Iqama holder on long term vacation, and students who want to go back have been registered with the consulate.

During this pandemic of coronavirus, the Saudi government with the cooperation of Saudi health ministry took very serious steps to overcome the attack of Coved -19 to save the residents in the country canceled all International and domestic flight operations, closed the cities and imposed curfew since 12th  March 2020.

About 15,000 workers have lost their jobs in Saudi Arabia, while about 4,000 in Saudi Arabia are on visit visas who could not return due to the closure of flights due to the cancellation of international flights in the wake of the outbreak of coronavirus.

The government of Pakistan and Saudi Arab arranged two special flights per week (one from Riyadh and one from Jeddah) for their return to Pakistan.

Mr. Khalid Majid said Pakistan’s government is trying its best to compensate the Pakistani nationals who want to go back, they are very hopeful that once the situation returns to betterment they will expand the operation of the evacuation of the nationals.

Mr. Majid Memon Welfare consul at Pakistan consulate told Al Bilad that on 1st May 2020 Friday, the first flight of PIA took back almost 250 Pakistani nationals from Jeddah to Lahore, the operation will continue Insha Allah.

He explained that the number of people who want to go back or who registered through the online portal is very high and the capacity of the plane is very low.

“The number of people who wants to go back in such difficult circumstance is very high, and the government allowed at the moment only one flight per week from Jeddah and one flight from Riyadh, compensating all the nationals immediately is very difficult, it’s a request to all those who want to go back please bear with us, Insha Allah consulate will do everything to help them,” he said.

He explained that people who came on Umra visa already went back to Pakistan, now the remaining are those who came on visit visa and they stuck here, those who lost their jobs and their sponsors put final exit.

The consulate is giving priority to the people who came on short term visas, people with health issues, and people with a family emergency so they can go back safe and sound.

He also requested the people with valid Iqama and jobs to stay put, not to travel at the moment, and stand with the consulate in handling the situation. When everything will be back to normal they can travel at that time safely.

Mr. Memon also mentioned that the government of Pakistan is negotiating with the Saudi authority for those who are in Pakistan on re-entry and exit visa and wants to come back to the Kingdom, to let the PIA start operation for them to bring them back.

“The negotiations are under process, Insha Allah very soon good news will be given to the expatriates who want to come back to the Kingdom, but till then just wait and have patience,” he added.

Al-Bilad Daily English Online