Yesterday I had gone to meet a lawyer related to some property matters, he seemed to be in a good mood compared to the grim face lawyers have all the time. I asked why he looked so happy today and he somehow felt the need to talk to me about his personal matters and started narrating the reason for his happiness.

eFifteen years ago, his brother in law was struggling to make ends meet in India. He had taken huge loans and had a big debt that amounted to around 1 Million USD. His wife’s brother was already settled in USA and asked him to come and join him there hoping to earn more money and clear off this debt. Lured by big dreams, he took more loan and hopped on a plane to USA on a tourist visa that allowed him to stay in the country for 3 months.

But luck was not on his side and he could not land up any job in 3 months and when it was time to come back to India, he decided to stay back illegally and pray that he should not be caught. For 15 years he kept evading the authorities, hiding, living in the shadows till he was legally accepted in USA. In all these 15 years, he could not once come back to India as he would have been caught by the immigration authorities. Neither his wife or his only child get Visa to go there and meet him. When he left India, his son was studying in primary school and now he goes to College. For 15 years, his son could not feel his father’s hug all he could do was talk on phone or do a video chat.

Now, he has finally got a citizenship of USA and so did his wife and kid and they are going to move there and reunite. I’m really happy for them but a thought struck me, he missed on enjoying his youth with his wife, he missed the entire childhood of his kid. Wouldn’t he have had any affairs there and cheated on his wife at times when his sexual desires would overcome his moral ethics? Now when they are reuniting, his wife is old, his son is so grown up that he might not even need a father figure in life, so was all this worth it?

I’m not sure whether going to foreign lands for a better future without any concrete plan is a good move or not, but living like this is definitely not a step towards better future. This is not an isolated incident, there are so many people out there who go to various countries hoping to earn more leaving their families behind and never returning. Often I hear that the so-called “American Dream”, turns into “American Nightmare” because living in a ruthless society, no family to fallback on, very few social ties and practically no government support system (because you are living illegally) is disastrous and very few can hang in there and survive.

Yes foreign lands are not for the poor immigrants but seeing how the conditions are becoming bad for the illegal immigrants, either the government should work harder to stop immigration completely or make some measure to allow for them to breathe if they ever enter. At least don’t treat them like shit and punish them for just dreaming of a better future.


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