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Apply for correct type of visa: UK High Commission’s curt reply to Amjad Ali Khan

K High Commission said it will speak to Sarod maestro Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, a day after his visa application was rejected. “We don’t comment on the detail of individual cases, but can confirm we will offer to speak to Mr Khan about how he should apply for the correct type of visa to do what he wishes to do in the UK,” a British High Commission spokesperson said on refusal of visa to the internationally renowned musician.

The 70-year-old artiste, who was to perform at the Royal Festival Hall next month, had said that he was “shocked and appalled” at the rejection of his visa application.

Tagging Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj in his tweet, Khan had written, “My UK visa rejected. Extremely sad for artists who are spreading the message of love & peace @HCI_London @MEAIndia @UKinIndia @SushmaSwaraj.”

“Shocked & appalled. #UK visa rejected. scheduled to perform at the #RoyalFestivalHall in Sep @HCI_London @MEAIndia @SushmaSwaraj @UKinIndia,” he further wrote.

“Performing almost every year in #UK since the early 70s. Upset to have my visa rejected @HCI_London @MEAIndia @UKinIndia @SushmaSwaraj,” he added. Expressing disappointment over the denial of the travel document, Amjad’s son Amaan Ali said, “This has never happened before…He is someone who has worked all his life for the country and peace. The government should take interest why they (UK) are doing this.”

Artists, intellectuals travelling abroad should be placed under special category: Congress

After Bollywood actor Shahrukh Khan faced embarrassment in the U.S. and visa denial to Sarod Player Amzad Ali Khan by the U.K., the Congress says there must be a special category or position for intellectuals travelling across the globe so that they do not have to face undue difficulty.

‘Though these issues cannot be connected, security concerns are of prime importance. At the same time, artists, VIPs, writers, actors travelling across the globe, I think, there must be a special category or position so that they do not undergo too much of concerns, because they are clear internationally on security matters.

‘I think there should be an acceptance on their entry and exit, because this is also applicable to visitors into India. It would create further embarrassment if VIPs coming from the U.S. and England are stopped here, this would not lead to a good situation,’ Tom Vadakkan told ANI.

‘While security is a prime concern, at the same time, I have been told that the U.S. authorities have apologised for this, and I am sure that the United Kingdom will appropriately react to it, because we look at it as serious concerns for our artists, writers and intellectuals travelling across the globe,’ he added.

Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan was detained at the Los Angeles airport on Thursday evening for questioning by the U.S. immigration department. It was the third such instances when Shah Rukh was detained at an U.S. airport. Nisha Biswal, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia at the U.S. Department of State, tweeted apologising for the hassle. ‘Sorry for the hassle at the airport, @iamsrk ‘ even American diplomats get pulled for extra screening!’ she tweeted.

U.S. Ambassador to India Richard Verma also apologised to Shahrukh Khan, saying that he is working to ensure it doesn’t happen again.

Late on Friday, Sarod maestro Amjad Ali Khan took to the social media to express shock at having his visa application to the U.K. rejected. His tweets expressing disappointment come a day after Shahrukh Khan was detained for security checks at the Los Angeles airport.

With inputs from ANI and PTI

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