(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) Teams from the Ministry of Manpower (MoM) swooped down on the 'Bombay Galli' area of Ruwi and rounded up more than 200 illegal immigrants in the early hours of Tuesday.
Starting opposite KM Trading and ending near City Cinema Ruwi, Bombay Galli houses more than 1,500 expatriate workers in around 250 shanties. The raid started around 3.30am with a mandatory identity check.
''The ministry officials knocked on our door around 3.30am and asked all ten of us to show our resident cards,'' said Shivraj K, a resident of Bombay Galli.
''Fortunately, all my roommates had valid resident cards. The officials were polite.''
Most of those arrested hailed from South Asian countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh and were employed in construction and other menial jobs.
''They (the inspectors) came to our room around 8.30am and rounded up three people who did not possess valid resident cards,'' said N Nagaraj, another resident of Bombay Galli.
The ministry teams also raided three houses where alcohol was being sold and arrested several bootleggers. ''The ministry had received complaints from the public and other government agencies that alcohol was being sold by illegal immigrants,'' an MoM official said.
''The purpose of the raid was mainly to stop this practice during Ramadan.''
''Nearly 15 occupants of three houses who were selling alcohol illegally were arrested. By the time the raid ended, more than 200 people had been caught.They were taken away in five vehicles,'' said Nazim Khan, an eye