Chandigarh: The Punjab government on Tuesday decided to announce a comprehensive package for NRI Punjabis settled in various countries.

This will be announced at a three-day NRI convention to be held in Chandigarh on January 3-5 next year. At a meeting held in Chandigarh, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said all leading non-resident Indians (NRIs), including elected representatives, former MPs, councillors, and media persons will be invited for the convention.

"The first two days of the session would be held in Chandigarh and the concluding day's session would be held at Jalandhar. On the first day, a brainstorming meeting would be held with the elected representatives of various countries to get their suggestions for measures to be taken by the Punjab government for the welfare of NRIs," a government spokesman said here.

Expressing concern over illegal occupation of properties of NRIs in Punjab, Badal asked senior officials to come out with a legal framework under which protection of the NRI properties would be ensured."It was also decided to have a suggestive list of lawyers for every city and put it on the web so that NRIs could engage services of such lawyers for their legal disputes," the spokesman said.

Concerned about the number of youth, who had migrated illegally abroad, being detained in various countries, Badal asked the NRI affairs department to conduct a global census of such youth in coordination with the concerned embassies to compile a comprehensive list so that modalities for getting them released or providing them legal aid could be worked out by the Punjab government, he added.

Badal said the Punjab government had already given its approval to the Human Trafficking Act and was awaiting the assent of the union government to prevent the fleecing of youth by unscrupulous travel agents who cheat them in the name of sending them abroad.

Taking a serious note of the increasing cases of fraudulent marriages by NRIs and leaving brides in the lurch, Badal said the Punjab government was awaiting the assent of the central  government for compulsory registration of marriages by NRIs to check this menace.

(Agencies)

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