Runaway NRI grooms to lose passports, face deportation


Staff member
Jalandhar, Punjab: Non Resident Indian (NRI) grooms who believe "holiday marriages" are an easy way to make some money can think again.

In just two months, the regional passport office (RPO) here has confiscated the passports of 48 men who married, allegedly got dowry, dumped their wives and attempted to flee the country.

In Punjab's Doaba area, an NRI groom is a prize catch. But many women have had bitter experiences. There have been numerous instances of men settled abroad coming back to marry and abandoning their wives after taking away their money and valuables. To eliminate such practices, the RPO, which functions under the Ministry of External Affairs, created a women's grievance cell in February.

Women's grievance cell

"We have established a ‘women's grievance cell' to hear complaints from women who have been duped by their NRI husbands. So far, we have confiscated 48 passports of errant husbands by invoking a legal provision of the Passport Act, 1967," Parneet Singh, the passport officer at the Jalandhar RPO, told IANS.

The complainant has to submit the marriage certificate, a copy of the First Information Report (FIR) filed with the police and documents detailing the husband's name, date of birth and address.

"Over 100 complaints are still under our scrutiny and we will soon take appropriate action," Singh said. Once the complaint is received, he said, a show cause notice is issued. If there is no response to the notice, the passport is confiscated when the NRI shows it at the airport.

"Then he cannot leave the country until the matter is resolved, either legally or through mutual consent," he added.

"However, if he manages to flee, then we inform the Indian embassy in that country and he will be immediately deported to India, depending on the merits of the case," the passport officer said.