She had come to collect her belongings, accompanied by police
There was a time when parents and family in the UK of Indian roots were convinced that marrying their son to a girl from India was the best choice.
The ideology being that she would be respectful, disciplined, cultured and easily moulded into the family’s way of life in the UK, being so far away from home.
Giving the family control over the marriage and she would play the role of dutiful wife and daughter-in-law.
Supposedly, being less liberal and not ‘tainted’ with modern UK lifestyle habits possessed by British Indian girls from the UK, who are fully independent and ‘difficult to control.’
Thus, many families and British born Indian men happily went to India and selected a bride to their liking. Such as women who are very pretty and attractive, still a virgin, come from a wealthy household (which would also yield dowry) and possibly educated to a level that of below the groom.
This ‘marriage tourism’ in India has worked very well in the past decades for UK families and resulted in many marriages in the UK, which have worked fully on the principles and reasoning mentioned.
Also, families of the girls marrying have been very accepting of these marriages, fully satisfied and comforted that their daughter will be living and prospering in the UK and the West, away from India and its limitations.
On the other hand, this activity has also labelled many British Indian men as hypocrites, where they have ‘had their fun’ with British Asian and non-Asian girls here, and then went and imported such brides from India.
However, in recent years, things have changed dramatically.
This formula of finding a ‘good’ girl from India has somewhat began to produce a different result. With many cases of such marriages failing due to the women from India marrying with different intentions.
Cases from the Punjab have definitely increased. Where women are marrying UK citizens but have learnt that divorce is easily possible and laws in the UK are favourable to women. Giving them the opportunity to use marriage as a vehicle to enter the UK with premeditated plans.
Here are three example cases. The names have been changed for anonymity reasons.
Ceejay and Reena
Ceejay, a 30 year old British Indian man, happily dated non-Asian women and lived a very ‘non-Asian’ lifestyle in the UK.
He then went on a trip to India with his mother. When his mother’s close relatives introduced him to a potential wife. To the family’s surprise, he said yes.
The marriage was agreed and took place in India. He then welcomed Reena into the UK after completing the necessary legislation and papers.
A couple of months after, difficulties started with Reena constantly expressing she was missing home. Ceejay then happily suggested she visited her family back in India. She went back to India.
A month later she did return but not to Ceejay’s house. In fact, she visited him with another male friend and stated she wanted a divorce on grounds of non-consummation of the marriage and domestic violence. She had come to collect her belongings, accompanied by police.
Ceejay was in complete shock and so was his mother. No one could believe this simple looking girl from India could actually do this.
She left the household and Ceejay was in no state to contest the divorce, despite knowing fully it was all lies. What point was there fighting for someone who wanted to use you?
Reena then subsequently settled in the UK, free to bring her lover over from India.
Jas and Sheetal
Jas, a 17 year old, and his family lived in a non-Asian area where his parents ran a newsagent and off licence.
His parents knew that Jas was dating non Asian girls, smoking, drinking and living a very carefree life with no intentions to change. He had dropped out of college and was not doing much with his life.
So they thought of the quick fix. They took him to India and got him engaged to a girl, Sheetal, from a well-to-do family in Delhi. The family had servants and were of a middle class background. A match which was not really right from the start.
Her parents agreed on the basis, their daughter was going to have a life in the UK with a business family. A big marriage took place in India and then they returned to the UK.
Sheetal came to a very different experience compared to her life in India. She sat in the back of the shop and with very little to do. She was not equipped with many life skills due to her lifestyle in India.
Sheetal wanted to eat different foods, so she ordered pizza by phone. When the pizza arrived, the mother-in-law was shocked because, they had never ordered pizza in their lives!
Sheetal became pregnant and went on her own to medical appointments not joined by Jas.
She gave birth to a boy, which gave her something to occupy her time with. However, she was frequently on the phone. When quizzed by her in-laws, she said she was talking to friends.
A few months later, she packed her cases and at the door was a caucasian white man with whom she had developed a relationship and was leaving. She left and divorced Jas.
Tarlock and Jaspreet
Tarlock, a Maths teacher, wanted to marry a girl from abroad. His parents were happy with his decision. They went to Punjab and were introduced to a family from Ludhiana.
He met Jaspreet, a girl with a very modern outlook and was studying Bio-Sciences. Her family were quite liberal. His family were quite conservative.
However, they both got on and Tarlock convinced his parents she was the one. His mother was not sure but did not want to override her son’s happiness. They extended their stay and the marriage took place.
Tarlock then applied for her papers to come to the UK. She decided she wanted to finish her studies before coming to the UK. Something not agreed earlier.
Tarlock went along with her request although his parents were not. A year later, they were united in the UK.
Jaspreet found it hard to adjust to life with Tarlock’s family. She said they were ‘backward’ and wanted to move out. Subsequently, they moved into their own house.
A year into the marriage she gained complete freedom because Tarlock would not question her. She then went on a visit back to India to see her family.
A month later after coming back, Jaspreet told Tarlock she was pregnant. But then tormented him with the fact the baby was not his. His life had turned upside down. He could not tell anyone due to the shame.
She had the child, filed for divorce, and subsequently called the father over from India.
These example cases are a very small insight into this issue with many more emerging of this kind, every other week.
These kind of cases are leading to a lot of concerns in families and men looking for marriage partners from India.
Although, this does not mean that every potential bride has such ruthless and cunning plans. Absolutely not. However, with such cases being a reality, it is better to be cautious than ignorant.
For those men looking to marry a girl from India, here are some basic tips to help:
- Do not rely on third parties, even relatives. Find out from the girl yourself e.g. what her intentions are to marry.
- Ask her loads of questions. More is less.
- Ask questions about ambitions, goals and security e.g. how important is financial security compared to you as a person.
- Ask about her social life, hobbies, friends, her past, studies etc.
- Do not get swayed by wealth or status – this can backfire if you cannot provide the same in the UK.
- Do not say yes purely on looks or appearance.
- Ask her how familiar she is with the UK, laws and government.
- Observe the family and relationship between them – look out for over friendliness
- Families overly keen for marriages to happen are not always a good sign – it should be mutual between both parties.
- Try to get her contact number. So you can speak to her alone.
- Meet the girl more than once if possible.
- If you do like her, communicate as much as possible with her after. Use Skype, WhatsApp, SMS etc. Irrespective if you are told not to. It is your marriage and life at stake.
- Take your time and do not get forced by others, including your own family.
Marriage is not an easy step in life and if you are serious about it, sadly, in this day and age, you must do your due diligence.
This also raises the point that marrying a British Asian girl could be a better option. Since, she is unlikely to have a ‘lover’ back home or looking to get stay in a country, which she is already born in.
Either way, India has changed and marrying women from India is no longer a straightforward option. You need to be aware that a girl you are introduced for marriage may not have the same intentions or reasons as you.