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Indian Community Welfare Funds

Indian Community Welfare Funds

 Overseas Indian workers duped by unscrupulous intermediaries in the host countries, runaway house maids, those who become victim of accidents, deserted spouses of overseas Indians or undocumented overseas Indian workers in need of emergency assistance or any other overseas Indian citizens who are in distress would be the main beneficiaries of the Fund. The Fund will also be utilized to meet the expenditure for airlifting the mortal remains of overseas Indian citizens to India on a means tested basis, on the recommendation of respective Heads of Missions.

The Indian Community Welfare Fund (ICWF) is aimed at providing ‘on site' welfare services on a means tested basis in the most deserving cases including:

  • Boarding and lodging for distressed overseas Indian workers in Household / domestic sectors and unskilled labourers
  • Extending emergency medical care to the overseas Indians in need
  • Providing air passage to stranded overseas Indians in need
  • Providing initial legal assistance to the overseas Indians in deserving cases
  • Expenditure on incidentals and for airlifting the mortal remains to India or local cremation/burial of the deceased overseas Indian in such cases where a sponsor is unable or unwilling to do so as per the contract and the family is unable to meet the cost.

Apart from assisting Indian nationals in distress abroad, ICWF has been a critical support in emergency evacuation of Indian nationals in conflict zones in Libya, Iraq, Yemen, South Sudan and other challenging situations like assistance extended to undocumented Indian workers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia during the Nitaqat drive in 2013 and the ongoing Amnesty drive in 2017.

The scale and speed of these evacuations and assistance rendered through the Fund has been universally appreciated. It has also created a sense of confidence among the migrant workers going overseas about the support they can expect from India during critical times.

ICWF stands extended to all Indian Missions and Posts abroad and is primarily funded by levying service charge on various consular services rendered by Indian Missions and Posts abroad.

Recent changes

The revised guidelines being made broad-based seek to expand the scope of welfare measures that can be extended through the Fund. The guidelines would cover three key areas namely Assisting Overseas Indian nationals in distress situations, Community Welfare activities and Improvement in Consular services. They are expected to provide Indian Missions and Posts abroad greater flexibility in swiftly addressing to requests for assistance by Overseas Indian nationals.

 

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