JEDDAH: SYED TAUSIEF AUSAF
Published — Saturday 9 March 2013
Last update 10 March 2013 2:44 am
Indians living in the Kingdom have expressed surprise over new instructions issued by Indian embassies in the Gulf that bar NRIs staying in the region from carrying large amounts of Indian currency when traveling to India.
“There have been some instances when NRIs have been found carrying large amount of cash in the form of Indian currency while visiting India and faced problems at airport. In some cases the currency being carried by NRIs has even been found to be counterfeit,” a statement released by the Indian missions in the Gulf region has said.
According to the statement, only Indian residents are allowed to carry up to Rs. 7,500 in Indian currency per person when traveling abroad or returning to India. The statement said there is misconception that NRIs are allowed to carry Indian currency back to India.
Speaking to Arab News, S. Tauqeer, a Riyadh-based IT director in a French MNC, said: “In this age of inflation, Rs. 7,500 cap is not practical. Although it’s a good step by the government to ensure a proper cash flow via banks, it will be difficult to implement.”
Faisal Haleem, an IT specialist who has recently arrived in the Kingdom, said the move would hurt the labor class most. “Poor laborers are not educated. They come from villages. They don’t have bank accounts,” he added.
Syed Junaidurrahman from Hyderabad who has been working in the Kingdom for 20 years, said the move is justified to some extent “but the cap should be lifted to Rs. 20,000.”