Complaints against NRI husbands on rise, proposal for digital portals made
The National Commission for Women (NCW) and the Centre for Social Work, Panjab University, held a consultation with stakeholders, including industries and educational institutions regarding the economic rehabilitation of women deserted by Non-resident Indian (NRI) husbands.
An analysis of the data collected by the NRI Cell of the NCW shows that the number of cases filed by women against NRI husbands nationally and in Punjab have been steadily increasing over the years.
The number of complaints filed in India in 2018 was 572, while 528 complaints were filed in 2017 and 468 in 2016. The NCW receives around 250 to 300 complaints each month. A similar trend has been noticed in Punjab.
The complaints lodged, include desertion, domestic violence and harassment, appeal against foreign courts decision on divorce and child custody.
This year, the NCW will encourage research on cases of women deserted by NRI husbands, their lives and collection of data on different problems faced by the victims.
NCW joint secretary KL Sharma said, “There is need for a surgical intervention because the number of cases in some states including Punjab are increasing at an alarming rate.”
NCW research officer Chetna Soni said, “Awareness is the need of the hour. No college apprises girls of the risks of NRI marriages. Girls should be taught how to verify an NRI groom’s credentials and the laws that can help women incase things go south.”
The issues raised, include the role of different stakeholders in securing employment for the affected women and education for their children, importance of need assessment, mapping the victims’ skill and education, bridging the skill gap and setting up single windows and monitoring systems.
“We are working towards forming a composite record of the number of complaints lodged against NRI husbands.Not all complaints come to the NCW or the NRI Cell. Some complainants approach the ministry of external affairs and the state police instead,” said Sharma.
The NCW proposed creation of digital portals in Punjab and Haryana so that the victims can lodge any grievence faced by them at a single place.
Sharma said consulate offices have identified some NGOs in other countries that can help provide legal aid and rehabilitation to the victims.
DAV College, Sector 10, principal Pawan Sharma said,”Educational institutions can help by reserving seats for the children of affected women.”