It’s not only Punjab, but Himachal too is getting affected with problem of runaway NRI grooms leaving behind their brides to fend for themselves.
But the issue of abandoned brides seems to be lost amidst myriads of large issues confronting women with Police not submitting ATRs (Action Taken Reports) in such cases.
The fact came to light during the 2nd day of public hearing by National Women Commission member Rekha Sharma at Shimla.
Talking to The Statesman, Rekha Sharma said three cases of abandoned brides have came to light today in which NRI grooms from countries like Qatar, Australia and Germany never returning or leaving women with their parents. “So far we have received around 6-7 such complaints from women and some cases even dates back to 2003,” she said.
There was a case in which a woman was left to fend herself with a disabled daughter with any support in-laws with the groom refusing to accept the relation.
In another case, a NRI from Germany married a girl from the state but he later refused to accept the marriage. Later he married another woman he loves and fled from the country. The woman is now being coerced by her in-law for settlement and are reportedly offering Rs 40 lakh.
Sharma also raised questions on lack of followup by police officials in such cases and added “I would write a letter to Director General Police, HP to direct police officials to strict and prompt action in such cases.”
Sources said the cases of women being subjected to cruelty of false marriage, cheating and dowry extortion have increased in proportion to the growing number of Indians emigrating in search of green pastures abroad.
“Unfortunately, it is the rural and middle class people that often succumb to the temptation of acquiring foreign groom. It is only when the daughters are abandoned that the parents, who have possibly liquidated their assets to help their daughter enter into the so-called marriage wake up and approach the state authorities,” sources said. The women rights group are now calling on the government needs to address the problem by considering suggestions such as marking on the visa marriage status of the person; providing legal assistance and financial aid to abandoned women, liaison with foreign governments to book the grooms in bigamy charge and to restrain the grant of ex-parte divorce by foreign courts.
In two days public hearing, the NCW has received 90 complaints, out of which 38 were received today.