Friday, April 13, 2007

The plight of NRI parents

1. Last week, a middle-aged woman (as usual, I read this in THE HINDU) was killed at her home in my native place, Guntur. She was working in a post of Gazetted rank in the State Govt. Her husband was a small worker in the State Govt, when he died 20 years back. She got the job, struggled and became a gazetted officer. At the same time, she brought up her three sons, two were Engineer and Doctor settled in U.S. and the third was an SE in Bangalore. She had been living alone for the last 1 year in the remote city in A.P. before she was killed (Sources say, she was killed by her relatives for the wealth and they were jealous of her growth).

2. After the above incident, many NRI parents (my native place, along with the Godavari districts is home for almost 70-80% of the Telugu NRIs) broke out in TV channels and newspapers – how anxious they were to see their loved ones? How their children treat them as servants – “My son, settled in US, took me there for 6 months to help when his wife was pregnant. Once he got a kid, he sent me back. They couldn’t get a servant for cheaper wages and she won’t be as caring as me. He didn’t take his father as he couldn’t do anything and it was expensive to maintain two. Same was the case with my daughter in UK. Now no one turns up. They even reduced the telephone calls!”

3. A friend lost his dad when he was in Engineering. His father was a businessman. His mom took the challenge, successfully overcame difficulties posed by her husband’s business rivals and financiers. This guy wrote GRE and went to US to do MS. His intentions are clear – to get a job in US, marry someone and settle there. His mother has been living alone in his native place!

Why do I mention these here?

I thought about the first woman. She should have been young when her husband was killed and she would have sacrificed everything in her life to bring her sons succeed in their lives. Now they deserted (I might sound harsh) her.

I believe in the ideology – “To get something, we have to leave or forget some other thing!”

I know about some common views like this –

• Every person has a career. To advance in one’s life, to reach one’s goals and aspirations, one has to sacrifice some things in the life.

• Every creature feeds its small ones only till some years. No young one hangs to its parents, once it becomes independent to earn its own food.

• Money, Career, Success in Life, Love – all these things are important to one’s life. But are they important than the parents –
- They are the ones who bring us into this world.
- They are the ones who teach us initially on how to get used to this world
- They are the ones whom we look at, when we are in troubles.

In this fast growing IT world that combines East & West using latest technologies like Internet, Web Cams, Net Phone, Chatting – one can keep in touch with the dear ones even though they are thousands/millions of miles away. But are they really happy?

A popular dialogue from a Telugu movie, Nuvvu naku nacchav –
(Hero is in AirForce (unemployed, roaming, … - Avara - most of you would have done this job)

Heroine: Your dad wants you to study well and settle in US. Why do you break his heart, by jollying like this.

Hero: You don’t know. My dad was very young when my mom had died. Though many had advised, he didn’t marry – just for my sake. He faced all kinds of troubles – he cooked, bathed me, blah.. blah. How can I leave him alone? Now, it’s my turn.

Ok. I will study and go to US, leaving him here. What will I do then?

• Suppose my dad is ill – from there – I can just call him and tell to consult a doctor and take some medicines. But, here I can take him to the doctor myself and can give tablets with my hands.

• There – I can roam in a car – but, here – I can roam my dad on the scooter all over the town.

• People like you, brought up in cities can’t understand our feelings.
(As told in my previous blogs, my memory is poor – I don’t remember movies that much – dialogues might not have been produced as they were)


  1. I tend to disagree to certain extent to the views expressed here.
    Why do people only try to see the negative sides of any aspect??
    Is it because its easy or is it because its interesting??
    Even the news papers tries to highlight news like "NRI deserting his parents/wife".
    But the fact is slightly different these days. I know "N" number of people who are living abroad chasing their dreams at the same time take care of their parents very well.
    There are people who ask their parents to visit them not because they need them, but because they can fulfill little dreams of their parents like getting into a flight, visiting a foreign country etc.
    Its always easy for film personalities on & off the screen to "preach" things like..."I miss going around on my dad's scooter or i miss eating pani poori on road side stalls".
    Why sould anybody miss that scooter when he can afford a comfortable 4 wheeler??
    I strongly feel these are the words whose "Stomach is full or who has surplus bank balance". Every middle class guy (including me) doesnt want to continue riding his dad's 2 wheeler but would like to buy a 4 wheeler to his dad who still rides a 2 wheeler.
    To wrap this up, i would say "Chase your dreams. Its NOW or NEVER"

  2. "Avara - most of you would have done this job"

    - U did'nt do this avara

  3. Are Jyothi.

    Its some kind of weird how you find time to write long Blog. I thought S/w companies squeeze juice out of the employees.So u guyz are fine writng Blogs, Ha!!

  4. I agree with Naga Chandra Sekhar comment.

    Prashant Jalasutram