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India Currents gave me a voice in days I was very lost. Having my articles selected for publishing was very validating – Shailaja Dixit, Executive Director, Narika, Fremont

While domestic violence impacts people in every community, a darker take of abuse emerged in the desi community during the pandemic. Transnational Abandonment – one of the most sinister forms of domestic abuse perpetrated on desi spouses.

Transnational abandonment happens when husbands abandon abused immigrant women in their country of origin. It happens often in arranged marriages within the South Asian community.

Most survivors are H4 dependents of H1B visa holders. Victims face domestic violence, emotional abuse, cultural alienation, or financial exploitation from husbands and in-laws. Once they are deliberately removed from the US, these disposable women lose legal protections, rights to their homes, finances and even children.

In June 2021, the Desi Dost Project began investigating Transnational Abandonment of Indian American women in the Bay Area, supported by the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism and India Currents magazine.

In May 2022, Kymal and Nagarajan-Butaney received a first-place award on Open In-Depth Reporting and In-Depth Reporting from the California News Publishers Association for their investigative reporting on the issue of transnational abandonment.

So what does a domestic violence survivor do once she is abused and abandoned in America?

Our panelists will discuss how survivors can find resources to get their lives back on track.

India Currents is sponsoring a Round Table where experts will offer perspectives on the impact of this heinous crime and a brave survivor will share her story of survival. A Q&A will follow after all the presentations are done.

Join the India Currents Round Table on Wednesday, September 21
12pm – 1pm PST

Click HERE to Register

About Our Panelists

  • Bindu Fernandes – Counselor and Advocate for Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Trafficking Survivors
    Bindu is a nonprofit CEO and previously was Executive Director of Narika. Bindu advocates for and counsels survivors and children affected by domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking globally, through survivor-centered programs and services. Is a big believer that everyone can be part of the solution in ending violence and creating communities that are safe and well. 

  • Kalpana Peddibhotla, Immigration Law Attorney 
    Of Counsel, ImmiCore Law, PLC 
    Kalpana Peddibhotla is an immigration attorney who has advocated for victims of violence throughout her legal career and even prior to going to law school. She has worked with Domestic Violence organizations providing immigration legal training for the South Asian DV Organizations, MAITRI and Narika. and she regularly provides pro bono consultations and services to several Bay Area DV organizations. In 2018 she received the pro bono attorney of the year award from the Tahirih Justice Center which advocates for legal and social justice for women and girls. Kalpana became intricately involved in supporting the survivors of a large human trafficking case in the Bay Area 20 years ago before there were T visa protections. She has volunteered for and been recognized by several organizations including the ACLU, Catholic Charities, Muslim Community Association, and the South Asian Bar Association, among others.
  • Priya, a survivor of transnational abandonment and an advocate for survivors of domestic violence.
  • Meera Kymal and Anjana Nagarajan-Butaney, India Currents journalists who reported on the phenomenon of transnational abandonment.
  • Viji Sundaram, who reported on California’s Coercive Control law. Viji formerly worked as health editor of New America Media, and as a reporter for India-West, the Cape Cod Times, Providence Journal and New Bedford Standard Times. She has been awarded several fellowships and won 11 journalism awards.

    Registration Link
    Register in advance for this meeting. You can click on the QR code below or paste the link into your browser.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting

Contact: for information