NRI Top Stories ( Page 1 of 23 )

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NRIs Urge Sushma Swaraj to Alleviate Norms for Aadhaar Enrollment December 17, 2018 15:53

The Non-Resident Indian (NRI) groups expressed concern over difficulties in Aadhaar enrolment and demanded a change of law to enable every NRI, regardless of residential status, get enrolled for Aadhaar. Many NRI activists alleged that though a circular was issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), several departments still demanded Aadhaar card from NRIs to issue Permanent Account Number (PAN) cards, register property and for other essential services. The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016, states that only a person who has resided in India for a period or periods amounting in all to 182 days or more in the 12 months before the date of application is eligible for enrolment. KV Shamsudheen, chairman of Pravasi Bandhu Welfare Trust, said, "We have written to external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj about issues related to Aadhaar enrolment. Two years ago, it was announced that the government would issue Aadhaar card to all NRIs. But that was not done. "The CEO of the UIDAI published a circular in which he advised all the Indian authorities not to demand Aadhaar cards from Non-Resident Indians because they were not eligible to take Aadhaar cards as per the current law." He said that despite the circular, authorities still demanded Aadhaar card from NRIs to issue PAN cards, for property registration etc. "As a result, many NRIs facing difficulties to obtain an Aadhaar card, at times, take the illegal route by bribing officials. "Other countries that have biometric identity cards, issue it to its citizens. India is the only country in the world that is issuing the identification card only to its resident citizens," added Shamsudheen. -Sowmya  

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India Revokes Passports of 33 NRIs for Abandoning Wives December 13, 2018 14:52

The Indian government has revoked passports of 33 Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) for deserting their wives, the Women and Child Development Ministry said Wednesday. The Integrated Nodal Agency (INA) up to now issued 8 Look-out-Circulars (LoCs) to absconding husbands in cases of NRI marriages. The agency, chaired by the secretary in the Women and Child Development Ministry Rakesh Srivastava, is constituted by the Ministry to deliberate on the Standard Operating Procedures (SoPs) to streamline the process of dealing with the cases of NRI matrimonial disputes. The 33 passports have been impounded by the External Affairs Ministry, a senior official said. The WCD Ministry has also said that a detailed proposal, including points like mandatory registration of NRI marriages within one week with penal outcomes for non-registration, would be placed before the Cabinet for its approval. Another clause includes amendments in passport rules to facilitate its cancellation for absconders, the official said. Related content: NCW Appeals MEA to Foil Ex Parte NRI Divorces "The WCD Ministry and NCW (National Commission for Women) are taking every possible step to protect women in NRI marriages. We serve as a nodal point of contact for grievances received from women on the dedicated email address This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. // and coordinate the redressal system," the WCD said in a tweet. The @MinistryWCD and @NCWIndia are taking every possible step to protect women in #NRImarriages. We serve as a nodal point of contact for grievances received from women on the dedicated email address This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. // and coordinate the redressal [email protected] — Ministry of WCD (@MinistryWCD) December 11, 2018 "The problem of women being abandoned in NRI marriages is a serious issue. For the first time, WCD Ministry, Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Home Affairs are providing coordinated support to women facing problems in their marriage to NRIs," the WCD said in another tweet. The problem of women being abandoned in #NRImarriages is a serious issue. For the first time, @MinistryWCD, Ministry of External Affairs @MEAIndia, and Ministry of Home Affairs are providing coordinated support to women facing problems in their marriage to NRIs. — Ministry of WCD (@MinistryWCD) December 11, 2018 -Sowmya Sangam

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Govt. to Table Bill in Winter Session to Allow NRIs to Vote December 08, 2018 11:32

A Bill to amend the electoral law to allow voting rights to the Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) will be tabled in Rajya Sabha in the upcoming winter session, the Central government on Friday told the Supreme Court. The Lok Sabha had earlier passed the bill on August 9. Once the Bill is passed and enacted, more than 25 million overseas Indians/NRIs will be able to vote through postal or e-ballots. A division bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta slated the hearing for January 2019 after hearing the submission of Additional Solicitor General ANS Nadkarni.  The court was hearing the petitions filed by two NRIs, Shamsheer VP from Kerala and Nagender Chindam, chairman of the United Kingdom-based Pravasi Bharat.  The petitions said 114 countries, including 20 in Asia, have adopted external voting, which could be held by setting up polling booths at diplomatic missions or through postal, proxy or electronic voting. Currently, only defense personnel are permitted to vote through a proxy. However, the facility for the NRIs will not be the same as that enjoyed by the services personnel. According to the proposal, the NRI voters will have to appoint a nominee afresh for each election and one person can act as a proxy for only one overseas voter. Due to the high travel cost and time involved, only a few NRIs come to India to cast their votes.  In July earlier this year, Attorney General K K Venugopal had told the court that NRIs could not be allowed to vote by merely changing the rules made under the Representation of People Act and a Bill was needed to be introduced. The court had asked the Centre to make a decision whether it would amend the electoral law or rules to permit NRIs to vote by postal or e-ballots in the polls in the country.  The court took note of the fact that the Centre and the Election Commission were complying to the report of a panel that NRIs might be allowed to vote. By Sowmya Sangam

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Telangana Assembly Elections: NRIs in Drive to Ensure Their Party Wins December 05, 2018 12:12

The Telangana Assembly Elections is scheduled to take place on December 07, 2018, and Telangana people across the world are absolutely making an effort to ensure that their political party is successful. Related content: Telangana Polls: Reasons Why It Won't Be a Cakewalk Win for TRS During the T20 finals in Sydney between India and Australia on Tuesday, a placard painted in green read: "Vote for AIMIM. Vote For Kite. Best wishes from Kangaroo Developers and Builders. Branches in Hyderabad, India, and Sydney." Telangana diaspora's growing interest in the politics of the state is plainly evident from the message. NRI (Non-Resident Indian) supporters of all major parties, including the TRS (Telangana Rashtra Samithi) and the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party), are doing their bit for imminent Telangana assembly elections. Related content: KCR Scared of PM Modi Because of His Corruption: Rahul Gandhi Placards supporting TRS, too, were spotted during some matches in Australia. The TRS recently launched its NRI campaign with a core people from New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware attending its first meeting. Its coordinator, Mahesh Bigala, spoke about the State government's development activities. A few days back, the TRS campaign "war room" in Denmark was launched through Skype.  Many BJP supporters from the United States of America also voiced their support for the party. "We will work for the development of Telangana the way PM Modi developed the BJP without corruption, nepotism and without discrimination," Krishna, a resident of New Jersey said. Related content: PM Modi Pours Scorn on TRS Government at His First Rally in Telangana A Telugu from Texas Express got in touch with urged Telanganites to vote for the BJP and to help it win by a big margin. The diaspora's most creative campaign, up to now, was done by the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabian leg of the AIMIM (All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen) party. They organized 'Asaduddin Owaisi Football Cup' in Jeddah. A supporter said: "The event was prepared with the intention of supporting our community and strengthening the party in the elections." -Sowmya Sangam

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Indian Woman Sets World Record in Arctic Expedition December 04, 2018 13:07

An Indian-origin woman has made the country proud by setting a record for or completing a winter expedition in the Arctic Circle, along with her two children. The 45-year-old Bharulata Patel Kamble accomplished this feat while undergoing treatment for cancer. The United Kingdom-based Bharulata's children - 13-year-old Priyam and 10-year-old Aarush - also set the record for being the first Indian-origin children to have hoisted the Indian tricolor in the Arctic Circle.  ImageSource: Mumbai Mirror Bharulata began her expedition two months after she underwent a life-changing cancer surgery. The courageous woman drove with her kids without any backup crew or vehicle. The journey was not easygoing as the trio faced galore challenges on their way to the Arctic Circle. Driving more than 10,000 kilometers in temperatures as low as -15 degrees Celcius in a region that only receives few hours of daylight, Bharulata proved nothing is impossible. The trio traveled through, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland before heading to Nordkapp in Norway. They started for the Arctic Circle from the iconic Santa Claus village Rovaniemi in Finland. Bharulata proved to be a very skilled driver as she moved through difficult hilly roads with extreme weather conditions. On their way to the Arctic Circle, the snow and wind storm made their journey more difficult. This was not the first time Bharulata visited Nordkapp. Earlier, she successfully drove solo through the Arctic Circle in 2016. She then traveled through 32 countries and covered a distance of 35,383 kilometers. She was also the first Indian woman to have hoisted the Indian flag in the Arctic Circle in 2016. Love for India Bharulata's journey was also about spreading awareness about cancer to promoting the Indian government's Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao campaign. This expedition was also likely the among the first such plastic-free expeditions. ImageSource: www.bharulata.com And all this for their love for India! Their aim was to hoist the Indian national flag at Nordkapp. Bharulata, along with her children reached Nordkapp, but faced the Arctic windstorm, with the winds as fast as the speed of 20 meters per second. After waiting with patience for two days for the weather to settle, the trio hoisted the Indian flag and sang the national anthem. -Sowmya Sangam

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Kamala Harris to Decide on 2020 U.S. Presidential Bid 'Over the Holiday' December 03, 2018 11:37

The first Indian-American to serve in the United States Senate, Democrat Kamala Harris said she will make a decision about a potential 2020 presidential bid during the upcoming holiday season. "It will ultimately be a family decision," Harris, who represents the state of California, told MSNBC during an event in San Francisco. "And over the holiday, I will make that decision with my family." Harris, 54, ranked fifth in a November poll of Democratic voters' preferred nominee to take on president Donald Trump's re-election bid, Politico news reported on Sunday. Related content: Tulsi Gabbard to Meet Indian-Americans on Potential Presidential Run On November 8, 2016, she was elected to Senate to succeed outgoing Senator Barbara Boxer. Harris has sent $25,000 to the Democratic parties in four early nominating states: Iowa, South Carolina, Nevada, and New Hampshire. In October, she visited South Carolina, Wisconsin, and Iowa to campaign for Democratic candidates ahead of the midterm elections. -Sowmya Sangam

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Pramila Jayapal, Ro Khanna Elected to Powerful Congressional Caucus December 03, 2018 11:24

It's been almost a month since four Indian-Americans was re-elected to the United States House of Representatives and now two Indian-Americans among them – Pramila Jayapal and Ro Khanna – have been elected to leadership positions of a powerful Congressional Caucus. The first Indian-American Congresswoman Jayapal has been elected as co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), along with Congressman Mark Pocan. California Representative Ro Khanna elected to replace Jayapal as first vice chair of the CPC for the 116th Congress beginning January 2019. The elections for the major caucus within the House Democratic Caucus - which will have in excess of 90 members - was held on Thursday. Both Jayapal and Khanna, who represents Washington and Silicon Valley respectively, were re-elected to the U.S. House for their second consecutive term during the mid-term elections held on November 6. Related content: Tulsi Gabbard to Meet Indian-Americans on Potential Presidential Run In the outgoing Congress, Jayapal was the First Vice Chair of the CPC. Congressional Progressive Caucus Established in 1991, the CPC aims to reflect "the diversity and strength" of the American people and pursues to "give voice to" the wants and aspirations of all Americans and to build a more fair and humane society. "I am committed to ensuring our caucus is as bold and strategic as possible, and that our members have the resources and the ability to stand up for the chance for every American to have real opportunity, to take on the largest corporations and special interests who have corrupted our democracy and to bring real power to workers, women, immigrants and all of those most vulnerable and marginalized," Jayapal said after her election. "The progressive movement is the strongest it has ever been and I, along with Rep. Pocan and the entire CPC Leadership, look forward to leveraging that power to deliver policies that benefit a diverse, inclusive and just America," she said. The American people sent a Blue Wave powered by progressives to Capitol Hill and we fully intend to respect the electorate's decision by presenting a bold, forward-looking agenda, said Pocan. "I am excited to welcome Rep. Jayapal as a Co-Chair of the Caucus and with progressives in Democratic leadership, we will continue to advance our ideas and shape policies that make a lasting and positive difference on the lives of the American people,” he said. The four central principles of the CPC are fighting for economic justice and security for all; promoting global peace and security, protecting and preserving civil rights and civil liberties; and advancing environmental protection and energy independence. -Sowmya Sangam

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Govt. to Table Bill to Stop NRI Men from Deserting Their Wives in India November 30, 2018 10:43

To curb the incidents of Non-Resident Indian (NRI) husbands abandoning their wives after marriage, the External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has announced that the administration will table a bill in the approaching winter session. Talking to the media in Hyderabad, Swaraj said that the government has already launched an institutional mechanism to track such incidents and added that 25 passports of such NRI husbands have already been revoked by the MEA. Related content: NCW Appeals MEA to Foil Ex Parte NRI Divorces Replying to a query about NRI husbands abandoning their wives, Swaraj who was in Hyderabad to campaign for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the imminent Telangana assembly elections said that through this bill the government aims to tackle such cases which have increased significantly over the years.  The Supreme Court has recently sought a response from the Centre on a plea seeking obligatory arrest of NRIs who not only desert their wives but then likewise harass them for dowry. A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices S K Kaul and K Joseph issued directives to the Centre and said that the deserted women should be accorded legal, financial help and their estranged NRI husbands must be arrested once the FIR is filed. A group of women who had allegedly been abandoned by their NRI husbands and endangered to dowry harassment moved to the apex court seeking reliefs plus the mandatory arrest of their estranged spouses and consular help in fighting cases in the foreign land, reported PTI. Earlier in September, the Delhi High Court also expressed concern over this matter and sought the response of various ministries on it. -Sowmya Sangam

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UK-Based Author Creates Cookbook with Indian Recipes November 26, 2018 12:01

An Indian-origin author launches a new cookbook in the United Kingdom and India, aiming at time-poor people who want to recreate a true taste of India in their kitchens. Mallika Basu's 'Masala: Indian Cooking for Modern Living', was launched in the UK a few months ago and in India this month. It takes a fresh look at family favorite recipes, untangling and updating them for busy home cooks. Basu, the granddaughter of former West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu, believes there is no reason to shy away from shortcuts. "I openly recommend ready shortcuts like packs of roti, jars of pickle. When you're rushing around you need to pick your battles. There is no shame in that," the London-based communications professional-cum-food writer says. "I have divided the chapters by moments like quick fixes, slow feasts, big platters and, of course, brunch, in a nod to our nation's love of breakfast. You don't have to be an expert at all, in fact, I am quite honest about my failings in the kitchen. I am a home cook who is trying to get wholesome recipes, simply and as often as possible on the table," she says. Dishes from All over India Basu has been writing about Indian food for more than a decade and found herself simplifying recipes to fit with her busy life and present-day kitchen. "So many Indian cookbooks are based on nostalgia and what our grandmothers and mothers did, and yet our lives have changed so much. I wanted to create a cookbook that reflects the way we live, cook, eat and entertain today, and a very contemporary Indian design aesthetic," she explains. The dishes selected for her new book are favorites from her family home in Kolkata, and her mother's Delhi and Afghani heritage, as well as some newer ones she fell in love with on her recent tours to India. The dishes are from all over India, with simplicity being the key factor that binds them together. "The book is a very personal one that mirrors my own upbringing and learning. I was brought up in an unconventional home with flavors from around India and beyond making it into our kitchen. All of this unconventional thinking, deep love and detailed understanding has made its way into 'Masala'," she says. Packed with Practical Tips In reference to Britain's own love affair with Indian food, Basu welcomes the increasing admiration of the food of different parts of India but acknowledges a certainly limited view of the complication of the country's cuisine. Read: Kolkata-Born Scientist Rahul Mandal Wins UK's Popular Baking Show She says, "There is still a giant post-colonial hangover in the way Indian food is described and viewed...there is no such thing as curry in India, it simply means gravy/sauce, and that the curry house and 'Indian' takeaway food you get in the UK bears little resemblance to what we eat. In fact, it was developed specifically for the British palate and is British food rather than anything else." Basu's cookery book is packed with practical tips and tricks from busy mundane cooks, including recipe hacks that save time and effort, smart ways to merge vegetables into meals, creative ways to use grains and pulses, tips on fermentation and a sizeable troubleshooting section. After the promotion in the UK, Basu is presently preparing for a series of talks and book signings in India in January 2019. -Sowmya Sangam

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Sabarimala Row: Kerala Police Issue Warning to NRIs Inciting Riots November 21, 2018 11:01

Amid irrepressible protests in Kerala over Sabarimala temple, now warning has been issued to Non-Resident Indians who have allegedly been inciting riots and fermenting trouble over the Sabarimala issue. A notice issued by the Thiruvananthapuram City Police Commissioner says that NRIs found spreading instability about the Sabarimala issue through social media posts and voice notes will have their passports canceled, and be forced to return to India. The notice says, "It has come to our notice that posts and voice messages calling for riot with the intention of creating instability are being spread through social media in connection with Sabarimala pilgrimage. Those who spread these messages will be booked under non-bailable sections. The cyber cell of the police has collected details of those who are spreading such malicious messages from abroad. Legal action has been taken to cancel their passports and to make them return to the state." Related content: Sabarimala: SC Agrees to Hear Review Petitions on Jan 22  When TNM asked the Thiruvananthapuram City Police Commissioner P Prakash IPS (Indian Police Service) about the reasons for which the notice had been issued, he said, "The circular was given to address Sabarimala-related provocative voice notes videos and photos, and social media posts, it says those sending such things will have strict action taken against them." When pressed about the reason for including the warning to foreign nationals about their passports being canceled for indulging in such activities, he said, "It is on the basis of the DGP's circular. We have written like this because the highest number of such posts are coming from abroad, and [it needs to be known] that strict action will be taken against them. Their passports will be canceled and a case taken up against them." He reiterated, "This is a criminal case, it will be taken up in that matter. Hence the circular was given as an advance warning." The notice is being circulated on social media and causing some indignation with those who align themselves to Save Sabarimala protests alleging that this was a restraint strategy of the Kerala police. Even NRIs are threatened by saying that their PP will be cancelled. Utter Chaos. Govt must enquire and take action against city police Commissioner, Tiruvanathapuram. #SaveSabarimala https://t.co/ib3n2C4MEF cc @MEAIndia @SushmaSwaraj @HMOIndia pic.twitter.com/6VNTE4dqAC — Puushothman Vaikkath (@purushueme) November 20, 2018 Hope MEA will assure safety of NRIs. I cannot afford cancellation of my passport. Should I renounce Indian citizenship for living as an Ayyappa Devotee & stand with my temple Sushma ji @SushmaSwaraj ? https://t.co/uXcSWSbd37 — Anjali George (@Kuvalayamala) November 20, 2018 -Sowmya Sangam

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Clean Ganga Fund: NRIs Donate Only 2%, Says Report October 23, 2018 16:26

Of the total contributions received by the government's Clean Ganga Fund since 2015, more than 86 percent was from government departments and some other entities, the Indian Express reported on Tuesday.The Non-resident Indians (NRIs) and Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs) contributed only 2 percent said the report, which was based on records received by the Express in response to a Right to Information (RTI) application.Private organizations contributed Rs 19.54 crore, or 10.32 percent of the total sum, from March 2015 till 30 September 2018, while NRIs and PIOs donated Rs 3.76 crore in the same period.Contributions to the Fund under the heading "individuals", presumably Indian citizens, totaled Rs 2.37 crore, or 1.25 percent of the entire amount. The remaining amount, which pushed the total figure to Rs 189.17 crore, was contributed by "government departments, government organizations, public sector undertakings", the report said.The Clean Ganga Fund was formed by a cabinet decision in September 2014 for financing at least ten different kinds of activities for cleaning the Ganga.Some of them are: - Activities outlined under the 'Namami Gange' programme for cleaning of river Ganga.- Control of non-point pollution from agricultural runoff, human defecation, cattle wallowing, etc.- Establishment of waste treatment and disposal plants along the river around the cities.The Indian Express report, quoting the Fund's website, said it was established by the government with "voluntary contributions from residents of the country and NRIs/PIOs and others to harness their enthusiasm to contribute towards the conservation of the river Ganga".-Sowmya Sangam

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Indians Abroad Earn an Average of Rs 93 Lakh: HSBC Survey October 23, 2018 12:50

Indians living or working overseas earn an average salary of Rs 79 lakh a year whereas foreign expats in India earn an average of Rs 93 lakh, according to an HSBC survey.The survey "Expat Explorer Survey 2018" shows that a significant number of expats in India are from Australia, United Kingdom, United States of America, Canada, France, Germany, and the Netherlands and about 44 percent of them own some property in India. But then, 64 percent of Indians living abroad possess property in India.The study, based on 232 interviews, ranks India 12th in terms of comprehensive country ranking, 22nd for experience, 14th for economics, and 9th for the family. More than half (54 percent) of expats here are assured that their existence in India can aid build their personal wealth. They have significant assurance and hope in their financial futures and a solid basis of the existing scenario.Two-thirds relish occupying themselves in the local culture and their financial gain has allowed more expats in India than elsewhere to support causes, participate in local community events and donate to charity. According to the survey, highly educated, and often working in engineering or manufacturing industries, 34 percent expats moved to progress their career and 22 percent to develop their skillset. Some struggle with the new way of working through, and 41 percent say they work longer hours - almost twice the global average.Their salaries are only slightly better than at home, rising by 2 percent compared with a 25 percent global average. But with a lower cost of living than they are used to most have more disposable income than they did at home, according to the survey.The picture is quite dissimilar when it comes to Indians moving or living overseas. Europe is the first choice for 45 percent of Indians while only 29 percent have moved to the Middle East to work or settle. An average of 84 percent of Indians living abroad is known to be employed while only 51 percent of them have offsprings.Indians overseas also seem preoccupied with the property at home. A quarter own three or more somewhere in the world. With almost half moving to improve their earnings, the average income has risen 31 percent and almost two-thirds spend it on homes in India. Half plan to live there when they go home and 40 percent have friends or family currently staying there.With more than half (55 percent) relying on friends and family for financial advice compared with 40 percent of expats in general, the expat life for an Indian abroad often involves a tightknit group of people.-Sowmya Sangam

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