Monday, August 14, 2017

NRI = Non Resident Indian or Never Returning Indian...?

Some Non Resident Indians (NRIs) – who migrated abroad for a “better life” – they complain that life abroad is tougher than life in India. 

Sometimes – one meets NRIs with a guilty conscience” – who say that they feel homesick about India.  

Whenever I see such fake expression of homesickness and hypocrisy by people who have migrated abroad for “greener pastures” or for a “better life – I remember this story I had written a few years ago...  

Disclaimer 
NB: In this Story – for ease of understanding – the generic term NRI (Non Resident Indian) includes PIO (Person of Indian Origin) and OCI (Overseas Citizen of India) as well.

THE NON RESIDENT INDIAN (NRI) WITH A GUILTY CONSCIENCE
A Conversation 
Short Fiction
By
VIKRAM KARVE 

(This Story happened a few years ago)

A few days ago I met an NRI.

You know what NRI means  don’t you...?

Of course you do – NRI means NON RESIDENT INDIAN.

Of course  there is a RESIDENT INDIAN Friend of mine  who jokingly says  that NRI means: NEVER TO RETURN TO INDIA

In a nutshell – my Resident Indian Friend defines NRI as:

NRI = Never Returning Indian

What my Resident Indian friend says has a ring of truth about it – none of my classmates who went abroad (mostly to the USA) for higher studies returned home to India. 

They all settled down in America

I think almost all of them are American Citizens now. 

They have relinquished Indian Citizenship and taken up citizenship of their chosen land. 

They consciously and willingly pledge allegiance to their chosen country and not India  it may be apt to call them American Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) – rather than NRI. 

Such Foreigners of Indian Origin are called by various names like “Indian-American”/“Kiwi-Indian”/“British-Indian” etc

I met one such PIO the other day. 

I was surprised that – despite enjoying the fruits of living abroad (in the land of opportunity and prosperity) for more than 30 years  he still seemed to have a guilty conscience about leaving India – and “abandoning” his parents and loved ones – leaving them behind to fend for themselves. 

I got fed up hearing him fake his love for India and trying to show how much he missed India by faking a guilty conscience.

So  I asked him a simple question: 

“Why don’t you come back...?”

He gave me all sorts of excuses which were far from convincing. 

To put matters in the right perspective  I told him the following:

“... 1. No one forced you to go abroad 

You were not like indentured labour sent by the British from India to other colonies when thousands of Indians were transported to various colonies of European powers to provide labour for the sugar plantations. 

You migrated to the USA by your own free will

Like so many others you went to the land of opportunity  USA  to realize your American Dream.

2. In fact  when we were studying engineering in the 1970 it was you – who was so desperate to go to America – for higher studies – with the ultimate aim of settling down there permanently.

You were running from pillar to post to get admission to a good university in the USA and arranging finances (scholarship and loan) – despite the fact that you were getting a good job in India in campus placement.

Even if you wanted to study more and do your postgraduation (MS/ME/M.Tech)  you could have easily got admission to the best of IITs in India. 

On the other hand  persons like me stayed back in India – despite having an excellent opportunity to go abroad to America – you know that.

3. Obviously – you felt that America is a better place than India to live in

Otherwise  you wouldn’t have gone through all the trouble of migrating in the first place. 

If you had really wanted to  you could have come back to India on completion of your studies. 

With your qualifications  I am sure you would have got a good job here in India. 

But – you continued staying there in the US. 

You relinquished Indian Citizenship  and – you acquired American Citizenship.

4. Till now you have prospered in your adopted country and enjoyed the fruits of living in America

The main reason you left India and migrated for “greener” pastures abroad was to have a “better” life – since you felt that you could achieve that “better” life by migrating abroad – rather than staying back in India

You have achieved your life’s aim. 

So  in hindsight  what are you feeling guilty about...?

5. There is no need to have a guilty conscience about leaving India (and your near and dear one’s) for a better life abroad. 

Forget about us and those who you have left behind in India.

Stop feeling guilty and enjoy the “better life” out there (the very reason for which you migrated).

6. And  if you truly love India so much – then –  just pack your bags and come back forever

But – remember one thing. 

Come back – because you really love India 

Come back to India – only if you honestly want to come back and serve your motherland

Dont come back for some selfish reasons of your own (materialistic, economic, career ambition, “greener pastures” etc) ...


My NRI friend smiled like a Cheshire Cat. 

I knew he was never going to come back to India. 

He was just faking homesickness.

He was just trying to put on a false pretence of guilty conscience for our consumption. 

Dear Reader: 

Have you seen such hypocrite NRIs (Never Returning Indians)...?

VIKRAM KARVE
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Disclaimer:
1. This story is a fictional spoof, satire, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
2. All Stories in this Blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

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