इंडियन आवाज़     03 Dec 2023 01:16:10      انڈین آواز

US denies Visa to Indian Muslim Journalist

Our correspondent

 NEW DELHI: No matter how many times President Obama reiterates that ‘America is not and will never be at war with Islam’, but people in his administration has nothing to do with his words. The US authorities are continued to mistreat and hurt Muslims. Recently it denied visa to a liberal Muslim who is also happened to be a senior journalist of India’s reputed newspaper, the Hindustan Times.

Zia Haq, an Assistant Editor with Hindustan Times, was part of a seven-member journalist delegation invited to participate in a week-long technology and farm show that began on August 28 at Iowa in the United States.

However, with the U.S. embassy strangely suspending the processing of his visa, Haq had to drop his tour plan at the last minute.

Haque is so hurt by the U.S. embassy decision, he has expressed his pain in the blog.  He feels singled out because of his religion. “All other journalists in the delegation were promptly granted visas…What prompted this? My religion? My faith? My views? [But] I have never been a consistent, rabid or vocal opponent of America…” The other journalists were able to reach the U.S. for the show.

Those whose visas were promptly granted include journalists M.J. Prabhu of the Hindu, S. Swain of the Financial Express, Vivek Giridhari of the Lokmat, U. Pandey of the Dainik Jagran, Sudhakara Reddy of the Sakshi and Uma Sudhir of the NDTV.

 The visa authorities gave this in writing to Haque : “We are unable to issue your visa at this time as we require additional information. Further action on your case has been suspended under section 221(G) of the Immigration and Nationally Act until we receive the information indicated below. Your application requires further administrative processing. We shall contact you as soon as the administrative processing is completed. We regret that we are unable to provide with an estimate as to how long this will take.”

Since, there was no word from the embassy thereafter, Haque requested to withdraw his visa application. “I do not wish to visit a country I am not welcome to. Moreover, if my visa request were to be turned down, it would be an unnecessary taint on my travel record” he says.

“The US embassy may well assert that they did not reject my visa outright but only subjected me to additional background checks. I would want to tell them, a visa delayed is visa denied” Haque writes.

Earlier  Professor G. N. Qazi, the vice chancellor of Jamia Hamdard University, BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain were denied Visa. The story of actor Shah Rukh Khan is also well known.

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