A Sri Lankan woman who gave birth prematurely at a government hospital in Riyadh while her husband is in jail has told an Indian social worker she has no idea how she will settle her hospital bills, the Arab News reported.
Eliyathamby Rajeswary had come to the Kingdom as a housemaid to work with her husband Ramachandran Raveendran, who is a house driver in the same Saudi household.
Raveendran was jailed for one month for assaulting one of his friends in a brawl at his sponsor's compound. Although the jail term is over, Raveendran's sponsor had refused to give the clearance for his release, demanding SR4,000 from the wife.
The mental worry caused by her husband's prolonged jail term triggered the premature delivery of her child after a six-month pregnancy. The mother is currently in the police ward of the hospital, while the baby is in an incubator in the same hospital.
Kottugad Shihab, an Indian social worker who had visited the mother in the hospital, told Arab News yesterday it was a sad story where the parents had become victims of circumstances beyond their control.
The social worker said he had collected SR2,000 from philanthropists to pay the sponsor to secure the release of the husband.
“The couple has another 11-month-old daughter, Rasanika, who lives with their friends until the parents come home,” he said. Shihab said he has plans to meet the welfare officer of the Sri Lankan Embassy in Riyadh to help the couple sort out this matter.
The social worker pays regular visits to jails to look after the interests of Indians languishing there. “I came across this case during one of my routine visits,” Shihab said.
According to Shihab, government hospitals in the Kingdom offer health services free of charge to domestic servants who work in Saudi homes. However, in the case of Raveendran's wife, the sponsor has reported the family as absconded (huroob), which disqualifies the couple for free medical services.