Thursday, March 27, 2008

Where's My Utopia?

BBC NEWS - More than 100 Indians who moved to the US for jobs have marched thousands of miles to Washington DC in protest at being forced to work "like slaves".
The men plan to take their protest to the Indian ambassador.

The men say recruiters tricked them into paying up to $20,000 each for a new life in the US, where they then had to work in exploitative conditions.

The Mississippi firm that employed them, Signal International, has denied they were mistreated.

It says the men were paid wages above the local average and given good accommodation.

It accuses the recruitment firm of deceiving the Indians and has now ended its contract.

It is also demanding the recruiters return the fees the men paid them.

In 2006, some 500 men from across India each paid recruiters up to $20,000 for what they were told would be a new life.

They were given temporary visas and jobs at a marine construction company in Mississippi.

But the men say they were then forced to live in primitive conditions.

They are describing their protest as a Satyagraha, a word used by Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi to describe a non-violent battle against injustice.