Purna Singh Lama arrived from Malaysia

At least 166 Nepali migrant workers have died in Malaysia in the last four and a half months, reveals the Nepal’s embassy in Kuala Lumpur, raising a serious question over Nepali workers’ condition in South East Asia’s third largest economy.

Nepali embassy record shows that more than one Nepali worker died every day from July 1 to November 14, due to causes like heart attack, suicide, traffic accident, work place accident and natural deaths. Some 2,700 Nepali citizens have died in the country since 2003, the year when the government started to record such incidents.

Malaysia is largest labour destination for Nepali workers. Around 700,000 of total 2.5 million Nepali migrant workers are employed there. Stakeholders attribute the increasing number of deaths to appalling working condition, climate, lack of medical care and compulsion to work under immense stress, though there has been very little research on the matter. Doctors said most of the deaths could be avoided through healthy lifestyle and by ensuring better work environment, food, adequate rest and regular health check-ups.

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