My name is Nritya Ramani. I have lived in various parts of the globe such as the United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Sultanate of Oman, India and the United States. I completed my undergrad at the College of Saint Benedict, Minnesota and my Masters in Psychology at Pace University, New York.
I am a lover of socio-cultural dynamics and international relations, with more than 10 years of experience as a communications professional, psychologist, researcher, teacher, counselor and writer. Past organizations include the United Nations, Refugee Youth Project, Good Shepherd Services, and Saint Cloud Correctional Facility.
In 2018, I was nominated for the Decade Award by the College of Saint Benedict for outstanding achievements, global consciousness, leadership and serving as a great role model.
A keen interest in languages, I am bilingual in Hindi and English, have conversational fluency in Tamil, as well as dabbled in Russian. My next aim is to become decently fluent in Arabic.
My Dubai Guide is a humble effort on my part to give back to the city that has returned me my life. Dubai is one of the most happening cities in the world, and it is growing with exponential progress. With the Smart City Strategy, Dubai has taken modernity and efficiency to another level.
Yet, the majority of expatriates remain unaware of the diversity of services and applications provided by the Dubai Government. In the time I have lived here, I have discovered that there is a jarring communication gap between the expatriate population and the government.
It is my simple wish to address this gap by creating a knowledge portal, through which expatriates have better awareness of government programs, accessibility to different services, as well as security during their time in Dubai.
My Dubai Guide is meant to be a reference for individuals living or planning to migrate to the United Arab Emirates. The information provided on My Dubai Guide is gathered from credible sources, is duly referenced and credited to the concerned sources. At the same time, My Dubai Guide encourages individuals to examine other information avenues before making any crucial life decisions.
Disclaimer: My Dubai Guide does not provide legal representation, funding, health directives or coverage of any kind. My Dubai Guide does not represent or endorse any political, religious or communal views.
In August 2018, I relocated back to the United Arab Emirates from the United States. I had escaped from an abusive marriage and went through legal proceedings over the past one year.
Today, my divorce process is successfully completed in Dubai and I am a free woman. And I have to thank the incredible people and instituitions who played a pivotal role in my story.
The journey has been long, not made any easier by having to navigate the rules of the US, India and the UAE. But I am forever grateful to the efficiency, compassion and understanding of the Dubai justice system. Despite the trauma and complexity of my case, the officials here guided me throughout the whole process. I was not Arab nor Muslim, but I was treated equally and with complete respect.
If given the choice, I would have still chosen to do my divorce in Dubai hands down. I owe both my life and my freedom to the Dubai Police and the Sharia Courts. Ana Uhibu Dubai Jadhan.
But none of this would have been possible if not were for the extraordinary kindness and courage of three women:
- Lorrie Short
- Mindy Graber
- Shekoofeh Manzoor Sussman
They helped me escape my house of horrors and fly home safely to Dubai. I was extremely malnourished and sick, and if it were not for them, I would not be here alive today.
They say one cannot see God, that’s why he sends His Angels to us. We didn’t speak the same language, come from the same country or practice the same religion. But compassion does not know boundaries. It only helps when others close their doors.
There is nothing I can do in this lifetime to repay them. All I can promise them is this: as long as there is life inside me, they will have my everlasting gratitude and loyalty.
During this difficult period, I saw friends become strangers and aliens turn into allies. But my biggest and most loyal supporter, cheerleader and motivator was and will always be my mother. Throughout the courts, the doctors, the lawyers, she was there with me every step of the way. She is my hero and I can say with pride, I am my mother’s daughter. I couldn’t have done it without her.
I have always been one to take life’s challenges as a learning curve. What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger. We are only limited by our own fears and by how much we allow life’s debacles to intimidate us. Yes, there are moments of despair and hopelessness. But do not let it overwhelm you. Do not be afraid.
When you stand for what is right, you often stand alone. Sometimes your friends and well-wishers may be far beyond your reach. Sometimes you may be ostracized, mocked and preyed upon. It may seem frightening, frustrating and lonely.
But you are not alone. Darkness has a way of convincing us that it has obliterated light. But light will always prevail. If you have nerves of steel and iron-wrought will-power, I promise you, nothing can stop you. Because what is right can never be impossible.