Jeddah: A section of NRIs in the Gulf and USA could see crisis looming on the horizon ahead of proposed NRC (National Register of Citizens) and NPR (National Population Register) due to discrepancies in their Indian passports which have valid visas. Many have been approaching Indian embassies in the region to get their particulars corrected.
A considerable number of Indians, mainly from Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala working in Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries and also in the US, have discrepancies in personal data in their passports that may prove to be major hurdle in establishing legacy and family tree details for NRC and NPR.
Most of these Indians came to the foreign countries after several unsuccessful attempts, when there was no biometric system in India, to eke out livelihood. Several opted for fraudulent practices with the help of middlemen to obtain passports with wrong information.
This category of NRIs were either debt-ridden or victims of adverse circumstances.
“When I landed in Saudi, I was denied food and salary. I ran away, worked elsewhere, arranged a visa and returned to India. I then changed my name and returned to Saudi 25 years ago,” said an expatriate.
Similarly, many youngsters with poor economic background changed their date of birth to be eligible for certain jobs abroad.
Many applicants who applied for US visa failed to make a cut in visa interview at US embassy in then Madras and finally took the wrong route with the help of agents. People from Gujarat top this list.
After twin tower attacks in the US in September 2001, many nations including Saudi Arabia and the US adopted biometric system and spotted fraudulent practices.