A 63-year old Romanian man, Constantin Reliu, is finding it difficult to convince the court that he is in fact, alive after he found out in January that he was ‘dead’.
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The man had traveled to Turkey to work only to return to Romania after over 20 years to discover that his wife had registered him as dead.
The man is now finding it difficult to prove that he is alive as a court in northeastern city of Vaslui refused to overturn his death certificate because according to the court, the case was filed too late and the decision is final.
Worried Reliu told The Associated Press in a phone interview Friday from his home in Barlad, northeastern Romania that he was a living ghost.
In his words: “I am officially dead, although I’m alive. I have no income and because I am listed as dead, I can’t do anything. He became emotional during the interview, saying “I think I am going to cry” and going on to voice rage and a desire for revenge against his wife, who now lives in Italy.
He added, “I am not sure whether I am divorced or not. I am not sure whether she is married to someone else or not. Nobody will tell me.”
Reliu explained that he first went to work in Turkey in 1992 and returned in 1995 to the first big shock of his marriage — his wife’s infidelity. In 1999, he decided to return to Turkey for good.
The AP was not able to locate his wife to hear her side of the story.
Reliu’ woes started last December when Turkish authorities detained him over expired papers and in January deported him to Romania.
As he landed at Bucharest airport, he was informed by border officials that he had been officially declared dead.
The border officials made him undergo six hours of questioning and tests.
They measured the distance between his eyes to see if it corresponded to an old passport photograph; they asked him questions about his home town, such as where the town hall was; they checked his fingerprints.
“They decided that it was me!” Reliu said.
But authorities in Barlad were less convinced. He spent weeks trying to persuade them to issue him papers so that he officially “existed,” he said. When that failed, he asked them to overturn the ruling on his death certificate, issued in 2016, which also ended in failure on procedural grounds.
Reliu said he would like to file a fresh lawsuit but has no money and suffers from diabetes, which makes everything more difficult.
He also said he has been banned for life from returning to Turkey but would like to write to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to appeal the decision.