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'No go' rule for bachelor labourers

GROUPS of bachelor Asian labourers could soon be banned from living in certain parts of Manama, if councillors get their way.

Rules determining where and how Asian labourers can live in Manama are being drawn up by the Capital Municipal Council's technical committee.

The plan, which hasn't been finalised yet, aims to prevent groups of Asian labourers from living in parts of the capital where there are large concentration of families.

It follows several incidents in which Asian labourers caused discomfort to families and, in some cases, assaulted children, said technical committee head Sadiq Rahma. "The rules we are drawing up are designed to protect the rights of both the families and the Asian bachelors," he said.

"These labourers often have habits which are difficult for families living nearby to tolerate. They come out of their homes half dressed, brew alcohol illegally in their homes, use prostitutes and make the neighbourhood dirty.

"There have also been cases in which young children have been sexually molested."

The rules being drawn up will also limit the number of people who can live in apartments or houses. The premises in which they dwell must have at least 12 square metres of personal space.

"These are poor people who often live in groups of 50 or more, crammed into one house or apartment," said Mr Rahma. "The rules also state that there must be at least one bathroom for every five people."

Under the regulations, it will be up to the landlords to ensure that the rules are being met.

They have already been agreed on by members of the technical committee, which will put its final stamp of approval on them at their meeting on Sunday. They will then be discussed at a regular municipal council meeting before the end of the month.



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