Kerala Chief Minister said this scheme will help the families of the Keralites working in the Gulf as they often face sudden financial hurdles in case of a death.

Kerala govt Air India sign pact to bring bodies of expatriates from Gulf for freeImage for representation
news NRI Wednesday, November 27, 2019 - 09:57

In a relief to the struggling families of the expatriate Kerala persons in Gulf countries, the Kerala government has started a scheme to bring back to India the bodies of deceased persons free of cost.

The government has reached an agreement with Air India to freely repatriate bodies of Keralites who pass away in the Gulf countries. Those who fail to receive aid from employer, sponsor or embassy, can make use of the new scheme by the Kerala government to repatriate bodies back home free of cost.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan launched the new scheme via a Facebook post on Tuesday. “The relatives of those working in Gulf countries face sudden financial hurdles when their relative dies. To solve this problem, the state government had announced the scheme in the last budget in order to aid families in such incidents. This has now been fulfilled,” said Pinarayi Vijayan.

There will also be facilities for transporting the bodies from airports in Kerala to their home. “After repatriating the bodies to Kerala, it will be transported from airports to the houses of the deceased expatriates in ambulances of Non-Resident Keralites' Affairs (NORKA) Roots,” Chief Minister stated.

NORKA Roots chief executive officer and Air India’s executive director have signed the pact for the scheme. Relatives or friends of the expatriate Kerala natives in Gulf countries can give an application when necessary. The application form can be availed from the website of NORKA Roots.

For more details, one can also dial the toll-free number of NORKA Roots: 1800 425 393 (from India) and 00918802012345 (missed call services from abroad).

The state government had earlier this month also brought in a Bill which will aid non-resident Kerala persons — The Non-Resident Keralites Welfare (Amendment) 2019 Bill. The Bill was passed by the state assembly aiming to provide a lifelong income for Non-resident Keralites (NRKs) who wished to return to India. The amendment includes a Pravasi dividend scheme, where an NRK and their partner will have to make a one-time deposit in the range of Rs 3 lakh to Rs 51 lakh. The investors would then get a monthly dividend of 10% from the fourth year of deposit.

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