Some of the expatriates who have overstayed in Qatar for long periods are now hoping to finally return to their native countries by availing of the amnesty scheme for illegal residents.
The three-month grace period, which began on September 1 would continue until December 1. It was on August 24 that the Ministry of Interior (MoI) announced the amnesty for illegal residents to leave the country without facing any legal consequences for their overstay.
Reacting to the amnesty offer, an Indian expatriate - who has not travelled home for more than 12 years as he did not have a valid residence permit since he ran away from his employer - wanted to know if it was possible for him to travel home now and return to Qatar in the future on a new visa.
However, sources close to him said he was not sure about how to approach the authorities as he had overstayed in the country by several years.
Enquiries found that the expatriate was employed by a cleaning company when the MoI's previous amnesty was in place between March and July 2004. He left their employment immediately after the four-month period and had been eking out a living through odd jobs since then.
It is also learnt that this expatriate is not alone and there are several other cases of people running away from their employers and doing odd jobs to support themselves.
One of the main worries for many of these expatriates is whether the MoI rules will allow them to re-enter the country.
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