Rafeek Ravuther

Director at Centre for Indian Migrants Studies (CIMS)

Active in Country: India

DTP Alumnus: 2012 Migrant Workers Program Qatar & 2014 Migrant Workers Program Kuwait




Rafeek is the director of the Centre for Indian Migrants Studies (CIMS) in Aluva Ernakulam, India. CIMS was established to help families to locate their missing relatives who migrated from different parts of India into various parts of the world. CIMS’ initiative “Pravasalokam” (a weekly TV programme) opened a floodgate of issues to be handled in order to support stranded migrant workers in the Gulf. CIMS is seeking systematic intervention to assist migrant workers, especially from Kerala, which has a high rate of unskilled labour migration.


Rafeek completed the DTP Migrant Workers Programs in Qatar in 2012 and in Kuwait in 2014. His organisation has been able to implement DTP training through their advocacy work with the Government and other organisations. From the DTP program, Rafeek gained a better understanding of various international human rights conventions/mechanisms surrounding the protection of migrant workers, which helped him to draft and submit shadow reports in various instances.


Rafeek has been involved in raising public awareness on the plight of migrant workers and their families and on protecting the human rights of migrant workers. Some of the migrant workers issues that Rafeek focuses on include recruitment practices, Kafala system and rights to health.


He has conducted programs regarding each of these issues:

·         Recruitment - Indian Government recently changed the process of recruiting nurses from private sector to government sector in Kuwait, and implemented special emigration permission for all nursing jobs

·         Kafala system - he conducted programs about the bad practises of Kafala system

·         Rights to health - he conducted a medical camp in UAE, and supported a medical camp in Kuwait.


Rafeek has seen positive impacts from his advocacy work. Rafeek and CIMS raised issues on the lack of migrant workers’ rights to Parliament, State Assembly, and Members of Legislative Assembly. Rafeek explains that he was able to put forward his agenda before the Members of Parliament and it yield positive outcomes. From his experience, he believes the strategies that work best include working with the media, and advocating the issues directly to parliamentarians. For his work in the media, he has been able to refer to international human rights and labour standards.


At present India has not ratified the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (CMW). Encouraging ratification is a key advocacy objective for Rafeek this year. In his weekly TV programme, he focuses on presenting the slogan “India should ratify CMW”, and raising this issue before other media networks too.


Profile written - Unknown