Was treated like a criminal, immigration official was rude, shouted at me: British MP
British lawmaker Debbie Abrahams said on Tuesday that she was treated like a criminal at the Delhi airport. Debbie Abrahams also alleged that the immigration official at the airport was “rude” and also “shouted at her”.
The Oldham East and Saddleworth Labour Party MP was travelling to India to pay a visit to her friends and family when on Monday, February 17, she was stopped at the immigration and was told that her e-visa, which was valid until October 2020, had been rejected.
She was deported to Dubai from where she had flown into the Indian capital.
Speaking to India Today TV, Debbie Abrahams said, “I am prepared to let the fact that I have been treated like a criminal go, and I hope they will let me visit my family and friends.”
Recounting the sequence of events on Monday, Debbie Abrahams said, “Along with everyone else, I presented myself at the immigration desk with my documents including my e-visa, had my photograph taken and then the official looked at his screen and started shaking his head.”
“He told me my visa was rejected, took my passport and disappeared for about 10 minutes. When he came back, he was very rude and shouting at me to ‘come with me’. I told him not to speak to me like that and was taken to a cordoned-off area marked as a Deportee Cell. He then ordered me to sit down and I refused,” Debbie Abrahams said.
The British MP said, “I didn’t know what they might do or where else they may take me, so, I wanted people to see me. He [the immigration official] disappeared again when I rang my sister-in-law’s cousin, Kai, who I was meant to be staying with.”
At this stage, the British High Commission was involved too, Debbie Abrahams said.
“After lots of different immigration officials came to me, I tried to establish why the visa had been revoked and if I could get a ‘visa on arrival’ but no-one seemed to know. Even the person who seemed to be in-charge said he didn’t know and was really sorry about what had happened,” she said.
“So now I am just waiting to be deported unless the Indian government has a change of heart,” Debbie Abrahams said. When India Today TV spoke with her, she was planning to go to Islamabad from Dubai.
Debbie Abraham has been very vocal about her concerns over Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) being ripped off its special status and has also written to the foreign office in this regard.
DEBBIE ABRAHAMS INVOLVED IN ANTI-INDIA ACTIVITIES: GOVT SOURCES
Government sources said on Tuesday that British lawmaker Debbie Abrahams’ e-Business visa was revoked as she was involved in anti-India activities and the cancellation was conveyed to her on February 14.
Asserting that the grant, rejection or revocation of a visa or electronic travel authorisation is the sovereign right of a country, the sources said Abrahams was issued an e-Business visa on October 7 last year which was valid till October 5, 2020, for attending business meetings.
“Her e-Business visa was revoked on February 14, 2020, on account of her indulging in activities which went against India’s national interest. The rejection of the e-Business visa was intimated to her on February 14,” a source said.