Are you or someone you know being forced to marry? Then, this is the right guide for you!
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- UNDERSTANDING FORCED MARRIAGE
- WOMEN AND HINDU MARRIAGE LAW
- FORCED MARRIAGE IN ISLAM
- CASE STUDIES
- HELP CONTACT NUMBERS AND WEBSITES FOR DIFFERENT COUNTRIES
What is forced marriage?
A forced marriage occurs when one or both spouses do not consent to the marriage and duress is involved. Children and at-risk adults (those with developmental disabilities) cannot consent to marriage. Girls under the age of 18 years and boys under the age of 21 years cannot legally marry in India.
You might be forced into marriage by the use of coercion, guilt, threats, blackmail, harassment, financial pressure, emotional pressure, physical violence, psychological duress, or you might even be tricked into getting married.
If you do not want to get married, it is illegal for anyone to force you to marry.
A forced marriage is a violation of human rights, as well as a form of Gender Based Violence as it usually involves mental abuse, emotional blackmail and coercion from either the family or society. Many cases also involve physical violence, abduction, detention, threat of murder, or murder.
Is It Different from Arranged Marriage?
Forced marriages are different from arranged marriages in which the families of both spouses take a leading role in arranging the marriage but the prospective spouses have the choice whether or not to accept the arrangement. This tradition has existed successfully in many communities and countries for a very long time. However, if even one of the spouses changes his or her mind but is forced to go ahead with the marriage, it is considered a forced marriage.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE BEING FORCED TO MARRY
It is your choice whether you decide to take legal action or not. If you want to take legal action, look below. If you want to leave your parents’ house but not file a case against them, then look at our Escape section for advice.
Legal options: If you are being forced into marriage you can do the following:
- [For Girls] Contact the Women Cell of the Local Police of the city you are in lodging a written complaint against your own parents for forcing you into marriage for which you did not give your free consent without undue influence or force. [Source]
- [For Girls] You can even file for domestic violence under the PWDV Act against your parents, brothers, other relatives wherein the Magistrate can pass ad interim order restraining the respondents from forced marriage, even give directions to the SHO of local Police station for providing complete protection to the woman in distress (you) and prevent your forced marriage. [Source]
- [For Girls] You can contact the National Commission for Women and lodge a complaint with them. They have information on their website regarding how complaints are dealt with in detail. They operate nation-wide.
You can lodge a complaint at the National Commission for Women > Online complaints > Register Complaint > Online Complaint Registration.
- [For Girls and Boys] Contact Love Commandos. They are a group that protects and helps young Indian couples to get married and to escape from forced marriage. If it is an emergency you can contact them directly.Love Commandos e-mail: email@example.com
Love Commandos Phone Helplines: 09313784375, 09313550006
Police Women’s Cell Hotlines + More information (shelters, trauma, etc.)
ALL INDIA: DIAL 1091 (24/7 HOTLINE)
- Andhra Pradesh:• National Commission for Women – 011-13237166• Women Protection Cell – 040-23320539• Women Police Station – 040-27853508• AP Women’s network – 040-27014394
- Bihar:• Women Helpline Centre – 18003456247 / 0612-2320047 / 2214318
- Chandigarh:• Women Helpline Number – 2741900, 1091• Samvad – (0172) 2546389
- Delhi:• National Commission for Women – 23237166, 23234918• Delhi Commission for Women – 23379181, 23370597• Women Protection Cell – 24673366/4156/ 7699• Central Social Welfare Board – 1091/ 1291(011)23317004
More Delhi Police contacts
- Haryana:• Women and Child Helpline – 0124-2335100• Helpline for Women in Distress – 9911599100
- Gujarat:• Women Helpline -1091• Ahmadabad Women’s ActionGroup – 27470036• Self Employed Women’s Association – 25506477/ 25506444
- Himachal Pradesh:• Women commission – 9816066421, 09418636326, 09816882491, 9418384215
- Karnataka:• Women Helpline Number – 22942149, 1091• women commission – 080-22100435/ 22862368, 080-2216485 Bangalore Police
- Kerala:• Women Helpline -1091• Kerala Women’s Commission- 0471-2322590, 2320509, 2337589, 2339878, 2339882,e-mail: keralawomenscommission@yahoo. co.in
- Madhya Pradesh:• S.P. Office / We Care For You – 2522111• Mahila Thana – 2434999• Pardeshipura – 2435999• Sanyogitaganj – 2523999• Pandrinath – 2342999• Mari Mata (Banganga) – 2423999• Juni Indore – 2362999• MIG – 2570111• Mallharganj – 2454201• Chandan Nagar – 23789147• Sanwar – 7321-220999• Mhow – 7324-228100• Depalpur – 7322-221100• Women Commission – 2661802, 2661804, 2661805,2739804, 2661808
- Maharashtra:• MAJLIS – 26661252 / 26662394• Women Right Initiative – 43411603 / 43411604• Human Rights Law Network – 23439754 / 23436692• Police Helpline for Women -103• Helpline for Women – 26111103, 1298• Shree Aadhar Kendra – 24394104 / 24394103
- Punjab:• Women commission – 0172-783607• Women Helpline – 1091, 9781101091• Samvad – (0172) 2546389, 2700109, 276000114. Rajasthan:• Women Helpline – 0291-0141-27445 96
- Tamil Nadu:• Women Commission – 044 –28592750• Snehdi – (044) 2446293• The Banyan – (044) 26530504 / 26530105• Helpline – 1091• Women Police Station, Adayar – 044-24415732, 044-23452586• Women Police Station, Guindy – 044-24700011
- Tripura:• Women Helpline Numbers – 0381-2323355, 03812322912
- Uttar Pradesh:• Sahyog – (0522) 2387010• Vanangana – (05198) 236985• Aali – (0522) 2782066/60• Women Commission – 0522-2288353, 9415293666• West Bengal women commission – 91-33-23595609, 91-33-23210154, 91-33-2217 4019/2244 8092• Swayam – (033) 24863367, 24863368
- West Bengal:• Women Helpline Number – 913323595609, 913323210154
Take care while filing a complaint
Some issues may arise while filing for complaint to the police regarding forced marriage. You can seek the help of the police to help you stop your marriage if you’re being forced to marry against your will. However, given the level of mistrust that prevails in our society vis-à-vis the police, such an intervention can boomerang on the complainant and may lead to more trouble. In such situations, social pressure applied judiciously might work better on parents as opposed to legal interventions.
Attempt to identify and approach influential people within your own community or extended family who have the moral clout to influence your parent’s decision. Alternatively, sympathetic teachers or respected social workers in the area could also be approached for help. However, these social interventions are outside the realm of legal rights and in extreme cases where social pressure does not work, police help may be sought. 
Your Rights Under The Law: Know your Rights
In India, arranged marriages (where both bride and groom are introduced and do provide some degree of consent) are the norm and even where the formalities are rigorously observed, the right to choice of spouse is very limited. Traditionally, the bride and bridegroom do not meet before the marriage and at the time of the contract of marriage either the bride’s silence is considered consent or her head is forcibly moved to denote consent. Many women are not aware that any marriage without their express consent is invalid according to the law.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948. Article 16 Universal Declaration of Human Right States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women in all matters relating to marriage and family relations and in particular shall ensure, on a basis of equality of men and women:
(a)The same right to enter into marriage;
(b)The same right freely to choose a spouse and to enter into marriage only with their free and full consent;
Article 23 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966: (c) No marriage shall be entered into without the free and full consent of the intending spouses. 
Delhi High Court has said the right to choose one’s life partner is a fundamental right. “The right to choose your life partner or whom you associate with is a fundamental right, it is an integral part of the right to life,” a bench of justices Gita Mittal and J R Midha said.
It also said that an individual’s privacy of marriage and dignity are essential parts of right to life guaranteed under the Constitution and the view has been upheld in various judicial pronouncements. 
Overall, men and women have a right to enter into marriage and freely choose a partner of their choice
Women and Hindu Marriage Law [back to top]
What is meant when the law uses the term “Hindu”?
The term “Hindu” in post-independence Hindu law governing marriage, divorce, adoption, maintenance, guardianship and succession, describes not only persons who are Hindu by religion, but also those who are Sikh, Buddhist, and Jain. Roughly speaking, the term “Hindu” encompasses those Indians who are not Christian, Parsi, Muslim, or Jewish for the purposes of the law.
But what is the remedy if a woman has been married off before she turned 18?
A woman whose marriage was performed when she was under 15 years of age can reject the marriage, or “repudiate” it and get a divorce on that ground alone. She can only take the step after turning 15, but before turning 18. However, by doing so she loses the right to maintenance or alimony which a divorced woman can claim legally.
If a woman has been forced into a marriage, is such a marriage void or voidable? What if a fraud has been played on her?
Such marriages are voidable. If the consent of the complaining party has been obtained by force or by fraud relating to the nature of the ceremony performed or to any significant fact or circumstance concerning the opposing party, the marriage can be voided. However, a petition for annulment in such a case must be presented within one year after the force ceased to operate or the fraud has been discovered. Most important of all, the petitioner or complaining party should not have lived willingly with the other after the end of the force or after discovering the fraud. A marriage is also voidable if it can be proven that the wife was pregnant at the time of marriage by another man. In this situation the husband must file his petition within one year of the date of the marriage.
Forced Marriage in Islam [back to top]
Islam gives women the right to choose and reject or accept the marriage proposals even against their parents will. Islam teaches that consent from both man and woman is a must before a marriage can take place. The Qur’an states “O you who have believed, it is not lawful for you to inherit women by compulsion…” (4:19). The Sahih al-Bukhari, one of the most revered sources of hadith (Islamic practice) amongst Islamic scholars, reports the Prophet Muhammed (Peace Be Upon Him) as saying: “The widow and the divorced woman shall not be married until her order is obtained, and the virgin girl shall not be married until her permission is obtained.” (Bukhari, 67:42). The next chapter of the Sahih al-Bukhari states: “When a man gives his daughter in marriage and she dislikes it, the marriage shall be repudiated” (Bukhari, 67:43), with further hadith providing examples of the Prophet Muhammed (Peace Be Upon Him) cancelling such marriages in which the daughter’s consent was not sought.
Unlike secular law, marriage within the ambit of Islam is not only a civil contract but a religious and spiritual contract between two people – which must be entered into freely and with mutual consent. According to Islamic custom, parents and guardians have specific rights in this matter; to arrange the marriage ceremony and conduct it as a respectful family event; give their advice and recommendation for a life partner for their children. These rights are encapsulated within the philosophy of ‘willayah’. However, Islam does not allow parents, guardians or other relatives to enforce their will or choice on a boy or a girl since it is they who are the real parties to that contract. The right to exercise free will and consent in choosing a spouse is a God given right. This is also clearly evident from important commandments given by the Holy Prophet (PBUH) in numerous Hadith, which lay down the foundational principles of formulating a marriage contract. In the Sahih Al-Bukhari, for example, a chapter in the book of marriage has been given the heading: “No father or mother or any close relation can force his/her children to marry anyone against their free will and consent”.
It is thus clearly apparent that forced marriages are totally unacceptable in Islam. Islamic commandments as mentioned above are very categorical in nature. Those who invoke Islam in order to justify their actions do so for ulterior motives.
REFERENCES [back to top] Shaikh, Anisa. “RIGHT TO MARRY UNDER RIGHT TO LIFE: PANORAMIC VIEW.” Legal India (2012): n. pag. 12 Jan. 2012. Web. 22 Feb. 2015. <http://www.legalindia.in/right-to-marry-under-right-to-life-panoramic-view/>.  PTI. “Right to Choose Life Partner Is a Fundamental Right: HC.” Zee News. N.p., 02 Apr. 2014. Web. 23 Feb. 2015. <http://zeenews.india.com/news/delhi/right-to-choose-life-partner-is-a-fundamental-right-hc_921904.html>.  “Women and Hindu Marriage Law – Manushi, Issue 136.” Women and Hindu Marriage Law – Manushi, Issue 136. India Together, Sept. 2013. Web. 23 Feb. 2015. <http://indiatogether.org/manushi/issue136/hml.htm>.  “Honour Crimes.” BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 23 Feb. 2015. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/ethics/honourcrimes>.  “More than 1000 Honour Killings in India Every Year: Experts.” The Times of India. N.p., 4 July 2010. Web. 22 Feb. 2015. <http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/More-than-1000-honour-killings-in-India-every-year-Experts/articleshow/6127338.cms>.  Women : Government Intervention at the Wayback Machine (archived November 26, 2005), National Commission for Women.  Goonesekere, Savitri (2004). Violence, Law and Women’s Rights in South Asia. SAGE Publications. p. 149. ISBN 0-7619-9796-2.  “Honour killing: SC notice to Centre, Haryana and 6 other states”. Times of India.  “Bill in Parliament to curb honor killing: Moily”. English.samaylive.com. 23 June 2010. Retrieved 1 October 2012.
If You Are Being Taken to India and Suspect You Will Be Forced To Marry [back to top]
If you are living in the UK and think, or know, you will be taken out of the country and forced to get married you can contact the Forced Marriage Unit (FMU). Read the Forced Marriage Handbook to familiarise yourself with your options. The team are made up by trained caseworkers who understand issues about forced marriage. They are dedicated to help prevent British nationals being forced into marriage overseas, but, the team also help anyone in the UK, regardless of nationality. As well as this, they will help and support people who are worried about relatives and friends who find themselves victims of forced marriages. They will help you leave a marriage you have already been forced into. You can learn about your rights as women in case of forced marriage here.
If you believe someone you know has been taken abroad to be forced into marriage then you can contact the Forced Marriage Unit or Childline Unit. If the person is a British national, the embassy will try to contact the person and help them get back to the UK if that’s what the person wants. The service is completely confidential and they won’t contact their (the victim’s) family. Some other organisations which provide help and support: Karma Nirvana, a UK based charity that helps victims of forced marriage and honour based crimes; JAN Trust (www.jantrust.org) and Ashiana Network (www.ashiana.org).
Give as much information as you can, for example:
- where the person has gone
- when they were due back
- when you last heard from them
If you feel the situation is very urgent you should call 999, and a trained professional will be able to help you find a safe place to stay, or stop a UK Visa if you have been forced to sponsor someone.
Never be afraid to ask for help if you feel like you are being forced into doing something you don’t want to!
For Australians, you may contact the nearest Australian Overseas Mission or call the Consular Emergency Centre at +61 2 6261 3305 or by SMS at +61 421 269 080.
If you are a U.S. citizen and the victim of a forced marriage overseas, you can contact the closest U.S. embassy or consulate or call our Overseas Citizens Services office in Washington, D.C. at 1-888-407-4747 (from outside the United States and Canada, call 202-501-4444).
If you are a victim who suspects a forced marriage, these organizations have successfully helped victims of forced marriages within the United States:
- AHA Foundation (http://www.theahafoundation.org)
- Tahirih Justice Center- Forced marriage initiative (http://preventforcedmarriage.org)
Forcing someone to marry has been a criminal offence since 2007.
You can contact the CMF (coordination marriage forcé) at 02/2492533. If you are in danger, please call 101 or 112.
In this site you can find some records of young women which successfully escaped from attempted forced marriages, a section about your rights and a list of associations who provide help and assistance.
The list is reported below:
- Groupe Santé Josaphat
70, Rue Royale, 1030 Schaerbeek
- La Voix des Femmes
20, Rue de l’Alliance, 1210 Bruxelles
- Planning Marolles
21, Rue de la Roue, 1000 Bruxelles
- Service Communal d’Aide aux Victimes de Molenbeek
4, Rue du Facteur, 1080 Molenbeek-Saint-Jean
- La Médiation locale de Molenbeek
4, Rue du Facteur, 1080 Molenbeek-Saint-Jean
282, Av. de la Couronne, 1050 Bruxelles
- Groupe pour l’Abolition des Mutilations Génitales Féminines
6, Rue Gabrielle Petit, 1080 Molenbeek-Saint-Jean
- Centre de Prévention des Violences Conjugales et Familiales
27-28, Boulevard de l’Abattoir, 1000 Bruxelles
- La Maison Rue Verte
42, Rue Verte, 1210 Bruxelles
- Vie Féminine : Maison Mosaïque de Laeken
11, Rue Thielemans, 1020 Bruxelles
- Comité belge Ni Putes Ni Soumises
147, Chaussée de Haecht, 1030 Bruxelles
Rue du Méridien 10, 1210 Bruxelles
- La Maison Plurielle
77, Rue Tumelaire, 6000 Charleroi
- Service Droit des Jeunes Liège
23, Rue Lambert le Bègue, 4000 Liège
- 15. Centre Louise Michel-Centre Planning Familial
45, Rue des Bayards, 4000 Liège
- FPS de Liège : la maison des femmes d’ici et d’ailleurs et le Centre de Planning Familial
16, Rue Alfred Magis, 4020 Liège
- Collectif contre les Violences Familiales et l’Exclusion (CVFE)
11, Rue Maghin, 4000 Liège
04/ 223.45.67 24h/24
- Service Droit des Jeunes Namur
26, rue Godefroid, 5000 Namur
081 / 22.89.11
- Service Droit des Jeunes Luxembourg
40, Rue de la Caserne Bte.4, 6700 Arlon
- Collectif Liégeois contre les MGF
c/o Centre Louise Michel asbl
45, Rue des Bayards, 4000 Liège
- Service de Prévention Quaregnon (Borinage)
95, Rue de l’Egalité, 7390 Quaregnon
- Bureau d’Assistance aux Victimes de la zone de Police de Mons-Quévy
1, Rue du Rossignol
For further informations: http://www.garance.be/cms/?-En-cas-de-tout-type-d-infraction-
Indian Embassy in Belgium details:
Address: Embassy of India, 217, Chaussee de Vleurgat, 1050 Brussels, Belgium.
Working hours: 9.00 AM to 5.45 PM from Monday to Friday
1.00 PM to 1.45 PM Lunch
Telephone Numbers: +32 (0)2 6409140 & +32 (0)2 6451850
Emergency help line No for consular assistance (after office hours): +32 (0)2 6466872
If you or someone you know is being forced to marry (or is experiencing domestic violence), the French government has established a dedicated hotline to call for those seeking more information or seeking to report a case: 3919.
Other fixed hotlines to call include: 17 for the police and gendarmerie; 15 for medical emergencies; 18 for the firefighters; and 114 for emergencies concerning deaf and mute persons. Additionally, the EU-wide hotline for emergency services can be reached at 112 (valid anywhere in the European Union). Additionally, Voix de Femmes, an organization dedicated to fighting against violence against women and forced marriage operates an anonymous and confidential SOS hotline: +33 (0)1 30 31 55 76.
- Fédération Nationale GAMS (Groupe pour l’Abolition des Mutilations Sexuelles, des Mariages Forcés et autres pratiques traditionnelles néfastes à la santé des femmes et des enfants) – http://www.federationgams.org/ – address will depend based on the city, check the website for the organization’s address closest to you
- Voix de Femmes : http://www.association-voixdefemmes.fr/ – Tél. : 01 30 31 55 76 – E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
The dedicated government webpage :
French legislation prohibiting Forced Marriage:
- Civil Code Article 146:
- Loi du 4 août 2014 (Law of August 4th, 2014):
Government PSA (French language):
If you are forced to travel abroad, here you have some useful informations regarding what to do before the departure and once you’re arrived in a foreign country. You can also find details about what’s a forced marriage and a list of associations who provides help and assistance.
Indian embassy in France details:
Address: 13-15 rue Alfred Dehodencq, 75016 – Paris, France
Tel: 00 33 1 40 50 70 70
If you are in Germany and suspect that you will be taken out of the country to marry, a list of resources is provided below for you. Don’t hesitate to contact at least one of the following:
- the Jugendamt [youth welfare office]. There you will get some advice and support. If you are no longer safe at home, the Jugendamt will accommodate you at a secret and safe place (custody). You will reach the Jugendamt in each city under the phone number of the Stadtverwaltung [city council]. Often, there is an emergency phone line of the Jugendamt for girls/ women in distress which you may contact. We are also well prepared to arrange a local educationist for you who will accompany you to the Jugendamt.
- a girls’ counseling center. There you will get some advice and support. The educationists will accompany you to other appointments, too, if requested.
- a girls’ refuge (assistance in NRW). There you will be protected against threat and violence. There you will be accommodated anonymously, if requested. That may also be done without your parents’ consent, if you are no longer protected at home.
German Consulate and Embassy Abroad: http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/EN/AAmt/Auslandsvertretungen/Uebersicht_node.html
- Mädchenhaus Bielefeld – online counseling tool – http://www.maedchenhaus-bielefeld.de/
- Free the Forced – http://www.freetheforced.org
- Gegen Zwangshierat http://www.zwangsheirat-nrw.de/infos-about-forced-marriage-42.html
FACHBERATUNGSSTELLE GEGEN ZWANGSHEIRAT
Tel.: 05 21 – 5 21 68 79
ZUFLUCHTSTÄTTE FÜR MÄDCHEN IN NOT UND KRISEN
Tel.: 05 21 – 2 10 10
Indian embassy in Germany details:
Address: Tiergartenstr. 17, 10785 Berlin
Tel: 0049-30-257950 (Office hours Monday-Friday 09:00-17:30)
0049-30-25795101/0049-30-25795103/0049-30-25795104 (Outside office hours)
Citizens of India in Berlin/Brandenburg/Mecklenburg-Vorpommern/Sachsen/Sachsen-Anhalt/Thueringen may contact +49 170 4515167 in case of a consular emergency
Italian’s criminal law forbid marriage between minors. Even though Italy has ratified the Istanbul Convention on violence against women, combined or forced marriage is not a criminal offence right now. If you are forced to marry someone against your will you can ask for annulment of the marriage, separation or divorce.
If you, or someone you know, fear to be taken to another country for a forced marriage, or if you fear for your safety, please go to the nearest police station or call 112 (Carabinieri) or 113 (Polizia).
You can also call 1522, a 24/7 operational number that will put you in contact with the nearest women’s shelter.
For more informations: http://www.telefonorosa.it/servizio-accoglienza-telefonica/ (in Italian only).
In addition, you can contact a women’s shelter (http://comecitrovi.women.it; http://www.tramaditerre.org/tdt/indices/index_276.html).
Here’s a handbook (available in Italian only), publicised by Tuscany region, that can be helpful if you’re looking for further informations about italian’s law, your rights and what you can do before the marriage or after it, if you were forced to marry out of Italy.
If you are forcefully taken in another country you could seek for help in the Italian embassy or consulate. Here’s a list.
Please also consider that any EU citizen in a non-EU country where his/her own national state has no representation is entitled to protection by the diplomatic or consular authorities of any other EU state.
For more details: http://ec.europa.eu/justice/citizen/consular-protection/index_en.htm
Indian embassy in Italy details:
Address: Via XX Settembre, 5. Rome, Italy
Tel: 0039 064884642-3-4-5
In Netherlands forcing someone to marry is a crime. More details can be found here:
In order to prevent forced marriage, the “Marriage against your will” campaign was settled up. The campaign’s website Trouwentegenjewil.nl (in Dutch only) provides information on the right to choose your own partner and tells young people where they can go for help and advice.
If something happens to you while you’re abroad, you can contact the 24/7 Contact Centre for consular assistance and advice at +31 247 247 247. If you call a Dutch embassy from outside the Netherlands, you’ll be automatically connected to the 24/7 Contact Centre, so you only pay local phone charges.
Indian embassy in Netherlands details:
Address: Buitenrustweg 2, 2517 KD The Hague
Tel: 0031 (0)70-3469771
Under the Spanish Criminal Code, forced marriage has only recently been identified as an illegal act. Additionally, Spain has increased the age floor for marriage (moving from 14 to 16) in order to prevent some of the forced marriages for girls under age 16. If you are seeking help in relation to forced marriage in Spain, follow the links below for help:
Indian embassy in Spain
Address: Embassy of India, Avenida Pio XII, 30-32, 28016 Madrid
Reception Tel No.: +34-913098870
Ambassador’s office Tel No. +34-913098873
After office hours, the telephone number for contact is: 0034 913098889
After office hours, emergency contact number for Consular cases is: 0034 619752305
In Sweden it is against the law for anyone to force someone to marry and this law has recently been strengthened to protect vulnerable persons from exploitation in this regard. There is also some legal protection in place to criminalise the preparation to commit the offence, for example forcing/luring the victim to travel abroad. The minimum age for marriage in Sweden is 18, without exception, and foreign marriages are generally viewed with the same rules as Swedish marriages (though recognition for child marriages has been given in some cases).
If you are threatened, in danger, have been locked up or abused, call the police on 112.
Kvinnofridslinjen is a national support line for women, it is a free, anonymous call and will not show up on your phone bill: +46 (0) 20-50 50 50 or www.kvinnofridslinjen.se.
For further information:
Indian embassy in Sweden details:
Address:Adolf FredriksKyrkogata 12, Box 1340, 111 83 Stockholm
Tel: 0046 08 107 008
MIDDLE EAST – GCC (UAE, Saudi, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman)
United Arab Emirates
If you are in the U.A.E, and think you are going to be taken out of the country to be wed against your will, please contact the nearest police station or call 999. You can also get in touch with the women and children’s shelters listed below, your school counsellor or administrators, social workers, friends or colleagues that you can rely on.
Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah
For immediate help or assistance call the women and children’s shelter’s helpline: 8007283 or 800SAVE
Indian embassy in UAE:
Plot No. 10, Sector W-59/02, Diplomatic Area, Off the Airport Road, P. O. Box 4090, Abu Dhabi, U.A.E.
Tel: +971 2 4492700
Pakistan embassy in UAE:
Tel: +971 2 4447800
For immediate help or assistance call the woman and children foundation’s helpline: 800111 or SMS HELP to 5111 or Email them at email@example.com
Click here for more details and FAQs
If you cannot avoid travelling/taken back to your home country, approach security at the airport you are planning to fly from. In 2013, three sisters were rescued at the Dubai Airport, as they feared they were travelling home to be forcefully married. So was another Arab teen, who was found crying at the airport by the airport security.
Article Reference: http://gulfnews.com/news/uae/emergencies/police-help-3-sisters-fearing-forced-marriage-at-dubai-airport-1.1266096)
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Embassy of India, Riyadh
24/7 Toll Free
+966 11 4884697
Address: B-1, Diplomatic Quarter,
PO Box 94387, Riyadh 11693,
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
9.00 AM to 5.30 PM (Sunday to Thursday)
Tel. No: 011-4884144/ 4884691 / 4884692/ 4884252 Fax No. : 011-4884750
Embassy of India, Jeddah
24/7 Toll Free
+966 12 6614276
Building of Mr. Mansoor Abdul Rahman Al Hueesh,
Villa No. 34. (Behind National Commercial Bank),
Near Al Huda Mosque,
Tahlia Street, Jeddah.
Tel : 00966-12-2614093, Fax : 00966-12-2840238
Diplomatic Enclave, Arabian Gulf Street, P.O. Box 1450, Safat-13015, Kuwait.
Consular Services working hours: 7.30 AM. to 4.30 P.M (Sunday to Thursday),
Embassy timing: 8.30 A.M. to 5.30 P.M
Telephone Numbers: (00-965) 22530600, 22530612 – 14
Fax Number: (00-965) 22546958, 22571192, 22573910, 22573902
Kingdom of Bahrain
Embassy of India, Bahrain
Building 182, Road 2608, Block 326
Post Box No. 26106
Kingdom of Bahrain
(+973) 1771 2785
(+973) 1771 2683
(+973) 1771 2649
To contact specific people in the embassy, click here.
Embassy of India, Oman Muscat
New Chancery Complex,
Jami‘at Al-Dowal Al-Arabiya Street,
Al Khuwair, Diplomatic Area.
Working hours 8:30 a.m. – 5.00 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays are closed holidays
Tel: +968 – 2468 4500 (Office General)
Fax: +968 – 2469 8291 (Office Gen)
Mailing address: P.O. Box 1727, P.C. 112,
Ruwi, Sultanate of Oman.
Click here for more info.
Embassy of India, Qatar
Embassy closed on Fridays,
Saturdays & Public holidays.
Official working hours: 9 am – 5.30 pm
Tel No for all enquiries: 4425 5777
Villa No 86 & 90, Street No. 941,
Al Eithra Street, Zone 63,Onaiza,
PO Box No. 2788,Doha – Qatar.
Click here for more info.
If you are in Canada and you think you will be taken to another country for a forced marriage, try to avoid travelling abroad if at all possible. It could be much more difficult to leave a forced marriage situation in another country.
Contact a person you trust to help you. You can tell a police officer or a social worker that you think you are going to be forced into marriage. You can contact a women’s shelter, youth shelter, school counsellor, provincial or territorial child welfare agency, help line, legal clinic, anti-violence agency, or victim support centre (see resource links below for more information about possible places to go for help). You can also contact Global Affairs Canada’s consular services for information about steps you can take to protect yourself and possible resources available in the province or territory where you live.
If you can’t avoid travelling abroad, try to provide the following information to someone you trust in Canada, preferably before you leave:
- your contact information abroad, including the address where you will be staying and the names of those with whom you will be staying, as well as their relationship to you
- a photocopy of your passport photo page and birth certificate
- a recent photograph of yourself
- your itinerary, there and back (anticipated travel details, flight information, return date) and names of people travelling with you
You may also consider taking the following safety measures:
- Know how to contact the nearest Canadian embassy, high commission or consulate abroad and carry the contact information with you (hidden).
- Sign up with Registration of Canadians Abroad, a free service for Canadians travelling or living abroad.
- Hide important documents and communications devices so that they cannot be taken away from you.
- Try to bring along a cellphone or other mobile device, and a backup device that can be used internationally. Keep it hidden with the sound turned off.
- Set up a way to communicate privately with someone in case you need help, such as using code words or a separate email account.
- Keep copies and/or take photos of your passport, visa, entry stamp, birth certificate and travel documents (hidden).
- Bring 2 extra passport-sized photographs (hidden).
- Keep some emergency cash in Canadian currency and the local currency of your destination country with you (hidden).
- Bring a map and a list of emergency contacts for your destination (hidden).
- Stay in frequent contact with people you trust. Let them know of your concerns and that they should seek help if they have not heard from you within a specified period of time.
If you are at the airport about to be taken abroad against your will, try to report your situation to someone, if you can do so without putting yourself in danger. For example, try to tell the security agents during security screening or airline officials before boarding the plane.
If you are a Canadian in another country:
contact Consular Services in the country you are in for assistance.
If you are a Canadian Citizen and you are being forcefully married in some other country then send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill this form :Emergency contact form. Or contact your nearest embassy or call +1 613 996 8885
Community legal clinics in Ontario:
Legal aid ontario:
Contact: 1-800-668-8258 (legal aid assistance and referrals in over 120 languages)
Free Legal assistance services for low income Ontarians
South Asian Legal clinic of Ontario:
Contact: (416) 487-6371
Family Law Education for women
Contact: (416) 961-8101
Justice for Youth and Children
Contact: (416) 920-1633
Ontario Women’s justice Network
Website: www.owjn.org (Online resource)
Emergency Shelter services:
Shelter Net Assessment and Referral Centre
Contact: (416) 338-4766 or Toll Free 1-877-338-3398
Shelter Central Family Intake
Families with Children-Contact: (416) 397-5637
Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT)
www.travel.gc.ca 1-800-267-6788 (North America) 1-613-996-8885 (Call Collect anywhere from the world)
If You Are In India
Contact the embassy of your country. They may be able to help you if you tell them you are a citizen of their country and are in danger. Try to keep your passport with you or a photocopy/scan of your passport in your e-mail or in a drive (like Cloud, Dropbox, or Google Drive). This will help prove your identity.
The following website provides details of Foreign Embassies in India:
List of Foreign Embassies in India
British High Commission, New Delhi
Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, 110021 India
+91 (11) 2419 2100
American Embassy, New Delhi
Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, 110021 India
Canadian Consulate, New Delhi
Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, 110021 India
+91 (11) 4178-2000
Embassy of United Arab Emirates, New Delhi
12 Chandragupta Marg, Chanakyapuri
+91 11 2611 1111
Embassy of the State of Qatar, New Delhi
EP-31A, Chandragupta Marg, Chanakyapuri
(+91-11) 26118787- 26117988
Saudi Arabia Embassy, New Delhi
2, Pashchimi Marg, Vasant Vihar
Consulate of Kuwait, Mumbai
120 Dinisha Wacha Road, Churchgate
(+91-22) 2873007, 2884179, 2871897
Embassy of the Sultanate of Oman, New Delhi
16, Olao Palme Marg, Vasant Vihar
(+91) 011 6140215
Consulate General of Belgium, Mumbai
(+91) (22) 2421 2115, (+91) (22) 2436 1602
Embassy of France, New Delhi
+91 (11) 2419 6100
Germany Embassy, New Delhi
No. 6/50G, Shanti Path, Chanakyapuri
(0091-11) 44199 199
Embassy of Italy, New Delhi
50-E, Chandragupta Marg, Chanakyapuri
+91 11 2611 4355
Royal Netherlands Embassy, New Delhi
6/50 F, Shanti Path, Chanakyapuri
Embassy of Sweden, New Delhi
4-5 Nyaya Marg, Chanakyapuri
+91 11 4419 7100
Australian High Commission, New Delhi
Australian Compound, No. 1/50 G Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, PO Box 5210
+91 11 4139 9900
Consulate General of New Zealand, Mumbai
Level 2, 3 North Avenue, Maker Maxity, BKC, Bandra East