My Return to India (R2I) story - observations of an OCI living in India

eBook: My Return to India (R2I) story

Here is my story of returning to India after acquiring a US Naturalization and Indian OCI. 

About a six years ago, I was at the crossroads, wondering about work-life decision I had to take. My dad, who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer a while ago was starting to gradually slow down. My aging parents lived alone in Bangalore, and I got the dreaded phone call from my mother on the verge of breakdown herself, asking for help.

After a rushed trip to Bangalore to assess and assist – I arranged for a caregiver to help them at night – I began to reflect on the course of action to take. I was living the American dream thousands of miles away - a well-paying job with a multinational, a cozy house in the suburbs of Anytown, USA and our pesky six-year old enjoying the early years at his elementary school.

If this were a business decision, a simple SWOT would indicate a rather uncomplicated way forward – delegate and outsource.  Suja and I decided to take the plunge use this as an excuse to Return to India. 

In the chapters of this eBook, I talk about my Return to India (R2I) story and observations as an OCI living in India. In the chapters, I also try to answer the most common questions asked by fellow Non Resident Indians (NRIs) and OCIs. 


My simple Return to India ‘Framework’

  1. Living and housing – There is a wide choice of housing options in Indian metro cities. Given lengthy commutes, many urban residents opt to live closer to their office, or spouse’s workplace, or closer to children’s school. The tradeoff is that rest of the family must bear the ordeal of commuting.  
  2. Schooling – Schooling options can be mind-boggling for those returning back to India. It is worth researching the topic a bit while staying grounded on one’s values and personal preferences. Of course, factors like location, transportation and commute will also play out 
  3. Jobs – India continues to experience a faster rate of growth than most developed economies, but finding a job or gig comes down to personal networks. Networking is especially important for mid-career professionals returning back 
  4. Financial cushion – Perhaps the greatest conundrum for those returning back to India is the questions: How much money do you need to save before you plan to return back? The answer can be highly subjective and depends on one’s family and personal circumstances. Needless to say, one needs to budget a ready availability of funds for relocation and initial settlement with contingencies. 
  5. Spouse’s buy-in – While advising me on my return to India plan, my friend half-jokingly said that the reason most expats return back to adopted homelands abroad after the initial 3-6 months is due to lack of spouse’s buy-in. This is absolutely a key factor for those planning a successful return-back to India. 
These are general topics where one must take key decisions, and I have explored some of it later in the book.

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