Monday, October 3, 2022

Delhi High Court allows British citizen to apply for new multiple-entry visa

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The Delhi High Court has allowed the petition filed by a British-Citizen, Christine Joan Underwood Godden seeking directions of the court to apply for multiple-entry visa to India as she was denied the same after getting blacklisted for two years by the Ministry of Home Affairs. 

The court noted the submissions made by the counsel appearing for the Centre that the blacklisting period is over and hence she can apply for a multiple-entry visa once again.

A single-judge bench of Justice Prathiba M. Singh said,

Considering the fact that the prescribed blacklisting period has come to an end, the Petitioner is now permitted to apply to the Indian High Commission for a multiple-entry visa to enter India. The said application of the Petitioner would be considered in accordance with law, without being prejudiced by her past record.”

It was the case of the British-Citizen that she had a multiple-entry visa which was issued to her by the Indian High Commission at London, and she has been visiting India frequently since 18 years. On 22nd April, 2018, on one of her visits, while going back from India to London, she was stopped at the Immigration centre at the Chennai airport, and was interrogated for about an hour by two officers. 

In May, 2018, she again applied for a one-year multiple entry visa to India and was duly granted the same on 30th May 2018. While travelling to India on 16th July, 2018, at the Delhi Airport Immigration, she was told that an order passed by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Govt. of India had directed that the petitioner would not be allowed entry into India, and hence, she was not permitted to enter India and had to return to London. The petitioner has, since then, repeatedly visited the Indian High Commission in London, in order to enquire as to why she was denied entry. She was finally informed that she was blacklisted by the Ministry of Home Affairs from entering India.

Also Read: Delhi High Court quashes FIR against student for carrying live cartridge in his check-in luggage

The counsel for the petitioner, submitted that the said two-year period has already lapsed w.e.f. 17th September, 2020. Accordingly, she ought to be permitted to apply for a multiple-entry visa, which would be considered on its own merits without prejudice due to the history of blacklisting.


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