‘Christian member’ of All India Professionals’ Congress says she was stopped from receiving money from ‘Hindu sender’


A Christian member of the Indian Professionals Congress headed by parliamentarian Shashi Tharoor has alleged that she was denied receiving money from a Hindu sender by Western Union, a company that deals with international money transfer globally.


Melanie D Martin, took to Twitter to share her frustration. She wrote, “My name is Melanie Martin and I am the member of the All India Professionals’ Congress. It’s much sadness that I am telling my experience today. I’ve received money from a friend of mine abroad. I went to the nearest Western Union outlet and, as procedure, I filled out the form and gave them my IDs. And they asked my what my religion was. So, I said I am a Christian.

“And he said that the sender is a Hindu and I am a Christian, so for that reason I was not eligible to get the money in transfer in cash. I was shocked because this has never happened to me. To be discriminated about your religious views is ridiculous. In the world that we live in today, we’ve right to be who we are. We have the right to be free and we have the freedom of speech.”

When contacted one representative of the Western Union told Janta Ka Reporter that the Western Union money transfer was ‘only for family members.’ He said, “We don’t know about her (Melanie’s) case. But there are indeed restrictions on Indian receiving money from foreigners unless they you are related to them.”

The company’s website says that money transfer payments are ‘reserved for family maintenance and personal consumer use.’

It says, “Pursuant to Indian government regulations, money transfer payments are reserved for family maintenance and personal consumer use only and cannot be used for commercial or business purposes, for purchase of property, for investments or for charitable donations.”

However, nowhere do the guidelines say that one can not receive money for personal use from a friend. The company rules also doesn’t state that the friend sending the money has to practice the same faith as that of the beneficiary.


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