Gulf migration specialist, Froilan Malit Jr. has recently held a lecture at Tribhuvan University in Nepal’s capital city of Kathmandu.
The managing director of online news and policy research platform, Rights Corridor, has engaged the students, senior officials, advocates, and academics on the topic of migration as a national interest for states in South Asia, particularly Nepal.
According to Mr. Malit, the Nepali-GCC corridor is an important site to investigate for both policy and scholarly purposes, given the region’s asymmetric migration regulations.
“Strong institutional research collaboration between academic, non-governmental organisations, and governments is essential for better understanding the corridor’s constantly shifting migration regulations and how they affect migrant workers on a daily basis in the origin, transit, and destination countries,” said Malit.
“I hope that by giving a lecture at Tribhuvan University in Kathmandu and engaging with students, senior officials, advocates, and academics, I will have contributed to a better understanding of migration politics in the Asia-Gulf corridor and inspired young students and researchers to pursue migration studies in the future.”
Mr. Malit’s lecture also attempted to understand different migration actors – migrants, their families, recruitment agencies, sending host states, international organisations – and their rationale, challenges, and opportunities on how to better manage international migration.
Commenting on Mr. Malit’s lecture, Dr. Anuj Tiwari, visiting faculty member at the Department of Conflict, Peace and Development Studies at Tribhuvan University said: “For unfortunate migrant workers, the vicious cycle continues, as they are bound to take that risky route as there are not stable employment opportunities in Nepal for unskilled workers and this sect of people are vulnerable to abuse. I am amazed with students’ knowledge on this, and inputs from Froilan have instilled a sense of hope for them to dig-deep into the issues.”
“The notable mentions on Nepal’s national interests, migration diplomacy and role of Nepali state to protect its citizens in and out of countries were the key elements for students to question the existing migration governance of Nepal,” added Dr. Tiwari.
“The course we teach here revolves around pertinent issues of conflict with the primary focus on structural challenges – and they have been the main triggers or push factors, as they call it in migration literatures, for people of Nepal to seek employment abroad. With that context, having one of the best scholars of labour and mobility in our class was an honour for us,” said Assistant Professor Pitambar Bhandari, Tribhuvan University’s head of the Department of Conflict, Peace and Development Studies, expressing his gratitude for Malit’s visit and lecture.
“I felt students had the opportunity to interact with Mr. Malit, and learn the nuances of labour and mobility especially on the Nepal-GCC corridor. We wish to continue with such eminent lectures on other pertinent issues as well, and this was a good start,” he added.
Mr. Malit’s lecture and field visit in Nepal was hosted by Dr. Tiwari and human rights lawyer Anurag Devkota of Law and Policy Forum for Social Justice (LAPSOJ)-Nepal.