“We were already considering moving back to Nepal but seeing our friends being sent home in boxes convinced us it was not worth the risk, ” says Hari.
After the attack, the Nepal government made it mandatory for contractors to pay a minimum of $1,000 per month and provide better security for Nepali guards. But the attack and its aftermath are a reminder that the needs of returnee migrants (be they security guards or other workers) have to be accommodated.
Under the current system, Nepal’s overseas migration machinery is built to address the needs of those who return in coffins but not of those who return alive and need either psycho-social or financial support.
Two years later, Anil is still trying to find a proper footing in Nepal as a civilian having worked in the army all his life. He has started his own security company that supplies guards to office s in Kathmandu. Like his friends who were terminated, Anil has considered re-migrating many times, but he keeps himself busy so he does not slide into depression.
Two of the survivors of the Kabul attack still have shrapnel in their bodies, and need heavy doses of painkillers.
Says Rokaya: “I was also going to write about my experience to mark the second anniversary of the attack, but never got around to it. But there is always next year.”
Some names have been changed.