In a bid to curb incidents of NRI husbands abandoning their Indian wives, the government is looking to initiate a crackdown on ‘absconding husbands’. Property of NRI husbands could be confiscated if they desert their wives and not respond to repeated notices issued to them. Union women and child development (WCD) minister Maneka Gandhi on Monday said that the government is considering crucial changes in the criminal law that will allow seizure of the property of NRI men for abandoning their wives. As per the report by the Hindustan Times, WCD ministry has said that a person will be assumed that he is evading summons if the person does not appear after three notices have been served. The person will be treated as an absconder.
WCD secretary Rakesh Srivastava was quoted as saying that enforcement agencies will be authorised to attach the property of such persons and their families. For this MEA has already written to Union home ministry (MHA) proposing the changes to Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC).
Earlier last month, the government’s nodal agency on NRI marital disputes sought revocation of passports of as many as 10 offenders. The decision was taken after Minister of Women and Child Development (WCD) Maneka Gandhi chaired the first meeting of the integrated nodal agency on NRI marriages, last month in January. The WCD ministry tweeted “INA reviewed the 10 cases of revocation of passport request made by NCW (National Commission for Women), and the MEA (Ministry of External Affairs) was asked to expedite action.” The body constituted to look into complaints arising out of marital disputes of NRIs will be empowered to issue look-out circulars against absconding husbands, the ministry said.
In order to restrict NRI husbands abandoning their wives, the government will also collect data on all registered marriages. As per the report, the WCD ministry has also asked the Law Ministry to make registration of NRI marriages compulsory, which will be done by amending the Registration of Births and Deaths Act, 1969.