Satwinder Kaur is one among several young Punjabi brides, who are in a hurry to settle abroad but end up being cheated and abandoned by their spouses. The Punjabi woman from Toosa village in Ludhiana was cheated by her NRI husband and sent back to Punjab almost 11 years ago.
“On February 23, 2009, I got married, Satwinder was quoted as saying by Indian Express. “As he was a teacher, he decided to go to Georgia and then from there to Ukraine to work as a foreign student coordinator in a private company.”
Satwinder said she never understood her husband’s intentions not to take her along. Her husband had left in 2010, and after almost five years, he had come back on 20 July 2015. She was very excited to see him. But when her husband’s family disowned her, they (she and her parents) moved into rented accommodation.
“He told my parents on August 16, 2015, that within three months, he will take me with him,” Satwinder added. “But that never occurred.”
Post this incident, Satwinder had complained to the state NRI cell in January 2016. Her husband in July that year had filed for a divorce at a Ludhiana court which was dismissed. In turn, Satwinder filed a case in February 2017 against her husband and in-laws under the IPC Sections 406 and 498.
“When I filed a maintenance case on October 30, 2017, I was granted Rs 10,000 per month,” said Satwinder further adding, “In August 2018, my husband’s passport was impounded.”
In the meantime, Satwinder Kaur simultaneously formed an NGO named ‘Abb Nahi Social Welfare Society’ in 2016 and started helping other such abandoned women. So far, she has helped 700 young women who were abandoned by their husbands. Her NGO is not only offering help to abandoned women, but also to those men who were duped by their wives. Abb Nahi Social Welfare Society is supporting 40 such men.
According to Satwinder, the idea of starting such an NGO came when she had to visit the court often and there she came across many girls struggling to get justice. And thus, she formed ‘Abb Nahi Social Welfare Society’.
Initially, a few girls met Satwinder through police stations and courts and then she contacted some more via social media platforms like Facebook as well as seminars commenced by NRI cells and the National Commission for Women. The NGO also had received support from the Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee (DSGMC) and the Ministry of External Affairs to hold conferences and to hold talks with other countries and procure documentation of such husbands, respectively.
The RPO of Chandigarh had also helped by initiating the process of impounding the passport of NRI husbands and other offenders.
“About 700 women and 40 men have approached our NGO,” said Satwinder, the president of Abb Nahi Social Welfare Society. “We have also got 20 couples reunited after counselling.”