Blacklisting employers and recruiters abroad from recruiting Indian migrant workers
- Responsible Organisations: Government of India (Government)
- ILO Regions: Asia and the Pacific
- Country(ies): India
- Thematic areas: Fair recruitment
- MLFLM: 13.
The Government of India has created a system for blacklisting foreign employers/recruitment agencies who have violated the rights of migrant Indian workers. If there is a complaint of rights violations against a foreign employer/agency by migrant workers, the Indian recruiter is expected to resolve the complaint as the first step. The recruiter can face suspension of license or even forfeiture of bank guarantee if at fault. This serves as an incentive for Indian recruiters to carry out due diligence of employers/ agencies.
Proof of impact/progress
The migration clearance system blocks unscrupulous employers and agencies from recruiting from India, preventing and protecting future migrant workers from possible exploitation by these employers and agencies. Transparency is maintained by making the list of the Prior Approval Category (PAC - of employers involved in recruitment irregularities) publically available on the government website.
In January 2021, there were 706 employers and agencies from 16 countries on the PAC list. The list includes individual employers as well as small, medium and large established businesses and even multinationals. Some of these companies are even ISO certified and recipients of large government contracts, and their listing puts pressure on them to address recruitment related irregularities.
Other promising features
Potential for replication or extension
Nepal and Philippines have similar lists of employers/recruiters abroad who have violated the rights of migrant workers. Replicating this initiative in other countries of origin, and through initiatives such as the Colombo process, could create pressure on employers in destination countries to adhere to recruitment and employment standards.
Novelty / level of innovation
This practice provides a simple yet effective means to put pressure on employers and encourages Indian recruiters to perform due diligence before engaging with foreign employers/recruiters. By making the information publicly available, it also creates opportunities for sharing information with other origin countries and protecting all migrant workers from such employers.
Non-discrimination / inclusion of hard to reach and/or most vulnerable migrants
Employers at destination who commit rights violations and are recalcitrant to resolve issues may try to approach the least informed and most vulnerable groups of workers. The electronic clearance system at origin automatically prevents such employers from recruiting, thereby protecting the most vulnerable migrants.
Link to PAC list: https://emigrate.gov.in/restricted/pacList.action