(Image source from: Hindustan Times)
The National Commission for Women on Wednesday asked External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to consider the practicability of entering into agreements with countries having ample India diaspora to prevent dissolution of Non-Resident Indian (NRI) marriages through ex parte divorce decree passed by foreign courts.
In a letter to Swaraj, NCW Chairperson Rekha Sharma emphasized the plight of Indian women in NRI marriages.
The commission said that in many cases, despite the marriage having been solemnized in accordance with the personal laws of the country (of the husband) and India, foreign courts decide the cases and dissolve marriages.
The commission proposed that the ministry explores the feasibility of entering into treaties with countries having sizable Indian diaspora so that cases accompanying dissolution of marriages performed in India may not be adjudicated by the courts of other countries - expect if parties unequivocally and voluntarily submit to their jurisdiction.
The NCW pointed out that it has received a big number of complaints from NRI brides regarding ex parte divorce decree passed by the abroad courts.
In many cases, such decisions are taken on the grounds currently not available for obtaining a decree of divorce in India, it said.
"It has been observed by the commission that NRI husbands are misusing such provisions," it said.
The commission is of the perspective that the dissolution of marriage in such cases should occur in accordance with the laws of the country where the marriage was solemnized and within that nation as Indian women in NRI marriages are peculiarly vulnerable in foreign countries, oftentimes without any financial support, Sharma said in the letter.
By Sowmya Sangam