Wednesday, Dec 17, 2003
Front Page |
Southern States |
Other States |
Advts: Classifieds | Employment | Obituary |
By R. Madhavan Nair
Middle-aged Zubaida and Kunhamina are Indian citizens. But their children are on the verge of deportation since they are not Indian citizens.
``There is no point in living if my daughters are taken away,'' says Zubaida, a resident of Pallikandi. She has two daughters who are not Indian citizens. Kunhamina, who lives in Kuttikkattor, has two sons. All of them would have to get Indian citizenship to avoid separation from their mothers.
The children are foreign citizens because they were born to foreigners and inherited their fathers' nationality. The predicament of the two women reflects some characteristics of social life that are typical of North Kerala.
Zubaida had been to Dubai in search of employment and got married to an Iranian there when she was only 19 years old. The woman was carrying their third child when she had to return to her hometown in Kerala in 1996. Her first two children, both daughters, were marked as Iranian nationals in her passport. The third child, being born in India, is an Indian citizen like her. The two girls, now aged 15 and 13, would now be deported, since they are Iranian nationals, though their mother is Indian.
Zubaida says she is deeply worried that the police would come soon to take away her children for deportation. Her Iranian husband had left Dubai and she has not heard from him for nearly two years.
V.P. Zuhra of Nisa, a voluntary agency which works for women in distress, today made an appeal to the authorities concerned to take necessary steps to grant Indian citizenship to Zubaida's daughters to avert their deportation.
Kunhamina has two sons by her marriage to a Yemeni national who had come to Kozhikode in 1984. Her husband is in Sharjah now and her sons, Faiza Abdulla and Ahmed Abdulla, are Yemenese nationals. There are regular visits from the police to examine if their visa has been renewed since they are registered as foreign national in the city police office.
Kunhamina is worried as to what would happen when her boys turn 16 when, according to the information she got, the police would come to deport them. Like Zubaida's two daughters, Kunhamina's sons also have filed applications for Indian citizenship.
Zuhra says the plight of Zubaida and Kunhamina is only the tip of the iceberg. This is a grave social issue in North Kerala.
They are eligible for Indian citizenship since they have been residing in India for five years. But some of them have not been able to meet other conditions for gaining the status. One condition is reported to be that they should surrender their foreign citizenship in the embassy of the country concerned. Many would not be able to do so for the simple reason that they do not have any passport to prove their nationality.
There are many more like Zubaida and Kunhamina, living under the constant fear of separation from their dear children. And what makes them tragic heroines is the fact that a majority of the `Indian mothers having foreign children'' are poor, at best semi-literate and vulnerable to exploitation.
The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | The Hindu eBooks | Home |
Copyright © 2003, The
Hindu. Republication or redissemination of the contents of
this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of