Punjab Govt bringing law to counter NRI Grooms who desert their Wives in India

In Punjab, the NRI grooms are notorious for deserting wives in India.  The people in Punjab are also obsessed about marrying NRIs and going abroad and for that they do whatever it takes to find and hook onto such a groom.  Many times it doesn’t work out.  Not only is the girl deserted, but the in-laws have extracted a heck of a lot of money as well from the bride’s family by then.  This needs to be stopped.  And now, after so many years the Punjab Government is proposing some measures.

15,000 women in the state have been deserted in the last two decades by husbands who live abroad. The government has proposed a new law that makes it compulsory for all marriages to be registered in court.

The proposal that will be introduced in the Punjab Assembly last week states that any Non-Resident Indian marrying a woman from Punjab will have to fill a special form when the marriage is registered. “All the information about the groom will be kept as a record with the local officials so that if there is some problem, we can contact the concerned person,” said Bikram Majithia, the minister in charge of all matters linked to Non-Resident Indians or NRIs. (Source)

There are somethings that every bride’s family needs to do:

  • Educate their daughters and make them financially independent.  No woman should be at the mercy of someone else
  • Stop obsessing about going to “phoren”.  It isn’t always worth it!
  • If you do marry your daughter to an NRI, know him well!  No matter what he says or his family projects.
  • And, do register your marriage.

More than any regulation, this issue will be best tackled at the demand level itself.



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  • Vidhya

    Hey Desh,

    Reading your blog after a long time because things have been so busy at my end.
    This issue was brought up on Satyameva Jayate as well. I think people need to start focusing on the marriage more than the wedding. The girls also have such fancy dreams about the day will get married but fail to build a rapport with the one they are getting married to. and this is unfortunately common even among educated girls. A Bollywood style wedding seems to people’s dream. Bigger, better, fancier, more expensive. But sadly the relationship ends Bollywood style too. Even in an arranged marriage, its possible to take the time to get to know someone and build a relationship of trust before jumping into it.

    When I got married to V, we tried to negotiate with our parents for a small and inexpensive wedding because we could clearly see that the quality of our wedded life did not depend on the 2 days of celebrations but on how we accepted each other with all our idiosyncrasies every day. But of course to parents it is a thing of social pride to conduct a large scale wedding. So ours turned out to be a big affair too :(

    • admin

      Hey Vidhya – welcome back :) I understand .. there is always this dichotomy between making it memorable and keeping it simple. It happens everywhere. :) In Punjab’s case, things go beyond the “large marriage” syndrome. Here, the guys just abandon the brides after sometime. They themselves live abroad while the girl is there in India. Sometimes these guys have girl friends in the foreign land and a wife in India. She is just someone to take care of his parents and a sex object when he comes for his annual jaunt home.

      But things get even worse sometimes.. now a lot.. where the parents of the guys keep pressing for more dowry as he is abroad… and torture the girl. Lots of issues involved in here.