Monday, October 12, 2009

NRIs seek Tharoor's help to protect property in India

Seeking to protect their properties and investments back home, non residents Indians have asked minister of state for external affairs Shashi Tharoor to sponsor a new bill that will safeguard their interest.

Supporters of the proposal voiced their grievances at the gathering on how their properties were allegedly taken over by government, mafia and illegal occupants.

However, at the meeting organised by the Keralite community in New York, Tharoor expressed his inability to sponsor the proposal as the matter is not under the jurisdiction of his ministry.

"The truth of the matter is that when it comes to this issue, I cannot sponsor a bill because in our parliamentary system it is not permitted," Tharoor told the members of the Malayali community, at his first public appearance during his visit to New York.

Tharoor underlined that while he could not sponsor the proposal, he would take up the matter with the relevant authorities in India. "I will be very happy to speak to the overseas affairs minister and law minister because if the government takes on this bill and recommends it then the chances of passage are much greater," he noted.

They pointed out that the 25 million strong Indian Diaspora contributes $52 billion as remittances annually, which is four per cent of India's gross domestic product.

Commenting on the proposal to grant voting rights for NRIs, Tharoor said a bill to this effect may not get support back home.

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