Elderly Indian couple in Dubai flies home as community helps settle debt

Staff Reporter/Abu Dhabi
Filed on October 22, 2020 | Last updated on October 22, 2020 at 07.57 am
uae, india expats, covid, dubai


'Their problems started in 2014, when the man lost his job'

After facing legal issues for over four years, an elderly Indian couple in Dubai were finally repatriated, the Consulate-General of India in Dubai tweeted.

The couple, 65 and 61 years old, had been stranded in the emirate because of a number of financial issues, including a rental dispute case.

Jitendra Negi, labour consul, consular, and Madad at the Consulate-General of India in Dubai, told Khaleej Times that the couple had been living in the UAE on an expired visa since 2016.

"We have known about this case for one year now. Even though several other legal complications were cleared, last year, it was bought to our notice that the couple was involved in a rental dispute. The real estate company said they would not relieve them of the case without paying the outstanding amount," Negi said.

Their problems started in 2014, when the man lost his job, the consul said.

"Our aim was to send them back to India before the amnesty period ended. Fortunately, thanks to the help provided by several social groups, including the Tamil Ladies Association, Dubai Computer Group, and Siddharth Balachandran, the executive chairman of Buimerc, we were able to facilitate their repatriation."

The Indian mission had also provided the couple with financial assistance.

'Left in the lurch'

The couple, long-time residents of Dubai, were left in a lurch when the man's company went bankrupt.

Social worker Uma Shankari, who assisted the couple, said: "The couple's outstanding rent was at Dh194,000. However, after several meetings with the builder, they agreed to settle for Dh50,000.

Several generous sponsors associated with the Dubai Computer Group agreed to donate funds towards their cause."

Shankari advised aged couples, especially those who have suffered job losses amid the pandemic, to fly home immediately.

She said: "I've noticed that many people tend to stay back in the UAE in the hopes they will find another job or things would get better for them financially. While this does happen to a lot of people, many end up in deep financial distress and debt."

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