LFutia
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Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sat Apr 02, 2005 5:55 pm

Source: http://web.mid-day.com/news/city/2005/april/106624.htm

Notwithstanding the megawatt smile, flamboyant British billionaire, Sir Richard Branson, was almost deported from Mumbai last morning. The chairman of Virgin Atlantic landed at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport*, without a valid visa.

Immigration authorities at Mumbai airport found that his visa had expired in February and he was issued a ‘refused to land’ certificate.

Taking it in his stride, Branson then allegedly called the PMO in Delhi and got himself a Temporary Landing Permit (TLP), which is issued in special cases only and generally to airlines’ cabin crew.

“While he was waving flags and dancing on the airport tarmac his officers came to us for immigration clearance.

“It was then we found that his visa had expired in February. Under normal circumstances the person is liable to be deported,” said an immigration official.

Branson was issued a ‘refused to land’ and that is when he called the PMO and subsequently the Bureau of Immigration issued a TLP to him, valid for 72 hours.

Immigration officials were adamant that Branson would not be given a TLP, because he did not satisfy the TLP conditions. But after ‘higher-ups’ intervened, they were forced to do so.

Branson is in Mumbai to promote the inaugural Mumbai-London flight. The flight landed in Mumbai at 10.10 am and the landing was followed by a song and dance session on the airport tarmac.

Confirming that Branson’s visa had expired, DCP SB-II Deven Bharti said, “We have issued him a TLP after verifying that he had a confirmed ticket to go back to London and his request was legitimate.”

Neither Branson nor the airline was available to comment.

* I changed the airport as the original link called it Sahar. Sahar is long gone as the name is now Chhatrapati Shivaji!
Leo/ORD -- Groetjes uit de VS! -- Heeft u laatst nog met KLM gevlogen?
 
zvezda
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sat Apr 02, 2005 6:30 pm

That's almost as absurd as the deportation of Cat Stevens from the US.
 
LAXintl
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sat Apr 02, 2005 6:51 pm

Would not be the first time SRB manages to nearly get deported. He was forced to leave Mexico in a hurry after offending a senior government official at a party that turned wild during the early 90s.
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
AlanUK
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sat Apr 02, 2005 6:55 pm

Typical Branson, all "in your face" and still can't get the basics right...  Yeah sure
 
JeffDCA
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:39 am

Quoting AlanUK (Reply 3):
Typical Branson, all "in your face" and still can't get the basics right...

Yea, that's why he's at the top of one of the most successful companies on earth!  Wink
If something hasn't broken on your helicopter, it's about to.
 
rlwynn
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:46 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 1):
That's almost as absurd as the deportation of Cat Stevens from the US.

Landing in India without a visa is a bit different than contributing money directly to Hamas. Or so it seems to me.
I can drive faster than you
 
zvezda
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:58 am

IF Cat Stevens had contributed money directly to Hamas, that might have justified turning him away. However, it certainly doesn't justify forcing several hundred passengers to land at Bangor. There was absolutely no reason to believe that Cat Stevens presence on the aircraft constituted an imminent security threat to anyone.

On the other hand, in the Branson case it was just an issue of dotting 'i's and crossing 't's on silly bureaucratic paperwork.
 
flylondon
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 8:46 am

Quoting JeffDCA (Reply 4):
Yea, that's why he's at the top of one of the most successful companies on earth!

Hahahahaha! Virgin Group? Whatever!
 
IAHTowTeam
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 9:44 am

Sounds to me like he thought he was above the law and just because he's got money he can do anything he pleases....haha. Hope he learns something.
 
supa7E7
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 9:50 am

It's not like Branson gets his own visas. One of his travel underlings screwed up. Regardless, airline CEOs are afforded all crew privileges as a rule, are they not? Therefore he deserved a crew waiver.
"Who's to say spaceships aren't fine art?" - Phil Lesh
 
schipholjfk
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 9:59 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 1):
That's almost as absurd as the deportation of Cat Stevens from the US.

Why is it absurd? Just because you are FAMOUS does not mean you can enter any country without their visa regulations. Especially India, the largest democracy in the world, where rule of law is supposed to be enforced (most of the time anyway)  Smile Would you be able to enter India without a proper visa? I had to pay $110 for a 10 year visa to India few years ago. We are all required to go by the rules including famous people! Being famous does not give you the right to enter any country at will without meeting the entry requirements of that SOVEREIGN country. Having said that I am glad that the Indian government used their brains and did not deport him and gave him the temporary stay.

And as for Cat Stevens... yes it may have been absurd in some people's views and more explanation is perghaps necessary, nontheless U.S. reserves the right to deny entry to anyone. And that right to grant or refuse entry to a particular country is reserved by EVERY single country in the world!
The fun of flying... love it !!!
 
schipholjfk
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 10:00 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 6):
On the other hand, in the Branson case it was just an issue of dotting 'i's and crossing 't's on silly bureaucratic paperwork.

Having an EXPIRED visa is NOT silly bureacratic paperwork. In this case the Govt. of India is not to blame, but the great Branson himself!
The fun of flying... love it !!!
 
jasepl
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 10:00 am

Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 11):
Having an EXPIRED visa is NOT silly bureacratic paperwork. In this case the Govt. of India is not to blame, but the great Branson himself!

Yeah. But exceptions are made for all kinds of people all of the time. It's really not a big deal.
 
jacobin777
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 10:00 am

Quoting Rlwynn (Reply 5):
Landing in India without a visa is a bit different than contributing money directly to Hamas. Or so it seems to me.



Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 10):
And as for Cat Stevens... yes it may have been absurd in some people's views and more explanation is perghaps necessary, nontheless U.S. reserves the right to deny entry to anyone. And that right to grant or refuse entry to a particular country is reserved by EVERY single country in the world!

where is the PROOF? It has NEVER been bought up since the incident. Supposedly the Massaud or some part of the Israeli govt. had found some "evidence" documents which "may" have shown Yusef Islam (which is his proper name, and how he likes to be addressed as) "might have somehow" supported Hamas in some way..........

Funny, if I can recall, a man/woman is innocent until proven guilty, that is how our forefathers of this country have setup our constitution...of course, that was until this administration took over......case in point....how many Guant. Bay prisoners were released YEARS AFTER NO CHARGES???? There are a few.
"Up the Irons!"
 
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mariner
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 10:38 am

Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 11):
In this case the Govt. of India is not to blame, but the great Branson himself!

Has he denied that? Has any of his staff denied that? Has anyone at Virgin denied that?

It was a screw-up. Human beings were involved, ands screw-ups happen. I once forgot to take my yellow fever certificate when I was going to Africa.

It was sorted out. It too a lot of fuss and bother (and a bit of money), but it was sorted out, and I dind't have "fame" on my side.

You make it sound as if SRB was deliberately trying to sneak into India and got caught.

Sneaking in, dressed like that? Yeh, right.

cheers

mariner
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airxliban
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 11:43 am

How did he get to India anyway? Did he charter one of his own aircraft, fly on a private jet, or a commercial airline or something else?
PARIS, FRANCE...THE BEIRUT OF EUROPE.
 
LFutia
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 1:19 pm

He was coming in on the innaugural flight to Mumbai.... and then he almost gets deported...
Leo/ORD -- Groetjes uit de VS! -- Heeft u laatst nog met KLM gevlogen?
 
zvezda
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 1:26 pm

Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 10):
And as for Cat Stevens... yes it may have been absurd in some people's views and more explanation is perghaps necessary, nontheless U.S. reserves the right to deny entry to anyone. And that right to grant or refuse entry to a particular country is reserved by EVERY single country in the world!

That's not what happened. The US gummint didn't just deny him entry. They forced the airliner he was on to divert. That was very expensive and seriously inconvenienced hundreds of people. There was no justification whatsoever for diverting the aircraft.
 
GuyBetsy1
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 2:27 pm

Has any country ever refused entry to someone like say, the current President of the USA?
 
mrniji
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 2:48 pm

A peson who does not have a valid document pemitting its entry (and does not want to apply for Asylum, which is 0 % Branson's case) is supposed to be deported. This is the rule, and the rule is enforced rigorously in India - and it is good they do it. Just recently, the top CEO of an American MNC was taken in custody and consequently deported because he forgot to renew his visa - and it is good it happenen, considering the s--t many of my country people have to only go through to get a western visa, regardless of their treatment abroad - I myself have two foreign, western passports, so it is not relevant for me. However, I have worked in HC of countries, and see the Western Visa system as completely ridiculess.

Same rights for all citizens please, with minor exceptions.. Branson is not an exception. If that guy wants to be treated better than many other honest businessman, tourists, he shows what an arrogant idiot he is.. hopefully virgin India will never take off

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 6):
On the other hand, in the Branson case it was just an issue of dotting 'i's and crossing 't's on silly bureaucratic paperwork.

It is not silloy paperwork. Even if it was silly, it does not give him the right to not comply with rules. Why is ammlying for a visa silly paperwork? A visa for India is veey easily obtainable in a very speedy manner (often within 5 hrs, and even by post) - if that guy just forgets or does not have the time, energy.. his problem

What you consider as silly paperwork is something a sovereign nation is permitted to do.. and seeing India's transformation, I hope the process gets even tougher.. so infom yourself a little before making statements which are absurd and ridiculess

Quoting IAHTowTeam (Reply 8):
Sounds to me like he thought he was above the law and just because he's got money he can do anything he pleases....haha. Hope he learns something.

I completely agree. Being a CEO does not put him above the law. See the example above

Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 10):
Why is it absurd? Just because you are FAMOUS does not mean you can enter any country without their visa regulations.

Exactly, I agree again. It is soooo easy to get a visa for India, so there is no excuse if someone has failed to comply with the rules




Some of you posters think that since you belong to Western countries, you should have more privileges, etc.. people, you are wrong.. learn to see us as sovereign nations with own interests, learn to respect us, then I can only say: Fetch your visa and Welcome to India!
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
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mariner
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 3:45 pm

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 19):
Some of you posters think that since you belong to Western countries, you should have more privileges, etc.. people, you are wrong.. learn to see us as sovereign nations with own interests, learn to respect us, then I can only say: Fetch your visa and Welcome to India!

Where does that come from? What Westerner is looking for privilege? 99.9% of visitors to India obey the laws of the sovereign nation of India to the letter.

But sometimes things go wrong.

He forgot to renew his visa - it happens. Deport him if you must - he's a sport, he'd have accepted it.

He'd have got a ton of publicity out of it.

You on the other hand, carry two Western passports. Hmmmm.

I'd call that a fairly "privileged" position - most Westerners are only entitled to one.

cheers

mariner
aeternum nauta
 
trident2e
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 5:59 pm

Quoting Lfutia (Thread starter):
Notwithstanding the megawatt smile, flamboyant British billionaire, Sir Richard Branson

Since when has he been a billionaire?
 
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AirIndia
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 6:32 pm

Quoting Trident2e (Reply 21):
Since when has he been a billionaire?

well, probably it meant a "Rupee Billionaire" ..  Wink
 
zvezda
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 7:10 pm

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 19):
A visa for India is veey easily obtainable in a very speedy manner (often within 5 hrs, and even by post)



Quoting Mrniji (Reply 19):
Some of you posters think that since you belong to Western countries, you should have more privileges, etc.. people, you are wrong.. learn to see us as sovereign nations with own interests, learn to respect us, then I can only say: Fetch your visa and Welcome to India!

If India desires to earn the respect of the international community, a Visa Upon Arrival program would be a good first step.
 
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AirIndia
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 7:28 pm

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 23):
Visa Upon Arrival program

Only during a calamity. India issued it for tsunami victims.

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 23):
earn the respect of the international community

It earned considerable international respect

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 23):
If India desires to earn the respect of the international community, a Visa Upon Arrival program would be a good first step.

As a regular feature, its difficult to implement due to the imminent terrorist threat.

[Edited 2005-04-03 12:51:00]
 
mrniji
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 7:45 pm

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 23):
If India desires to earn the respect of the international community, a Visa Upon Arrival program would be a good first step.

No need, as visas area easily to be obtained overseas. Moreover, I see visa-on-arrival rather as a money-making machine, since there hardly is any scritiny of the appicant in that quick procedue..

No, it is more effective to give the visas in the oversea missions. Moreover, as said, India has earnt enough respect
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
nudelhirsch
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 7:48 pm

Whatever the details are... this is the kind of press SRB wants, this is the kind of press that makes VS interesting...
Putana da Seatbeltz!
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Sun Apr 03, 2005 7:49 pm

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 23):
If India desires to earn the respect of the international community, a Visa Upon Arrival program would be a good first step.

Whats the connection.National security would come first.  Smile
regds
MEL
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
stealthpilot
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Mon Apr 04, 2005 9:22 am

Trident2e and Guru, SRB is indeed dollar billionaire, according to Forbes.

Visa on arrival need not necessarily be a bad idea. Threat to national security, why? Not if it's done correctly. If the person applying for the VOA is on the watch list or whatever, don’t let him/her get on the plane. A VOA would benefit tourism, which I might add India does a MISERABLE job in dealing with.
Mrniji, getting an Indian visa isn’t always as easy as you make it out to be. It took me a few days to get a visa, along with having to visit the consulate multiple times.
India needs a new visa system, a hassle free and simpler one. (Not in relation to Branson, I am not defending him) Why can’t we adopt a more ‘modern’ system, we have too! From smarter passports to integrated electronic immigration/emigration, it doesn’t compromise security.
-Nikhil
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misbeehavin
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Mon Apr 04, 2005 9:42 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 23):
If India desires to earn the respect of the international community, a Visa Upon Arrival program would be a good first step.

I don't quite agree with that Zvezda. Respect from the international commonity has nithing to do with visa regulations.

However, I do think India should eliminate visa requirements completely for citizens of several countries. Other than reciprocity, I don't see what purpose it serves.

I did some work with the MEA some time ago and we strongly recommended abolishing visa requirements for short visits for a hosts of countries, including:

Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Bhutan, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Macao, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Saint Kitts, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent, Samoa, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Vatican, Venezuela.

As for Branson's case, as Jasepl said, it really isn't a big deal. These things happen all the time in all countries.
 
aa777jr
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Mon Apr 04, 2005 9:46 am

Any check they can write Branson seems to be able to cash with his check book or his ass. I like the guy and the way he runs his company.

Regards.
A liberal is a man who is right most of the time, but he's right too soon.
 
schipholjfk
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Mon Apr 04, 2005 10:20 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 17):
They forced the airliner he was on to divert. That was very expensive and seriously inconvenienced hundreds of people. There was no justification whatsoever for diverting the aircraft.

That's your view and I respect it. If US law enforcement authorities deemd so, they have every right to take any action they deem necessary. Expense is really don't something you should consider if it is a matter of security. As I have I said over and over again, unless you were at the World Trade Center site like I was on 9/11 you will never understand the FULL horror of that day and everything associated with it. And to a certain extent I understand why US security officials are edgy. What exactly was so inconvenient? The fact that airline was delayed for few hours due to diversion? That can happen because of bad weather!
The fun of flying... love it !!!
 
schipholjfk
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Mon Apr 04, 2005 10:22 am

Quoting Jasepl (Reply 12):
Quoting Schipholjfk (Reply 11):
Having an EXPIRED visa is NOT silly bureacratic paperwork. In this case the Govt. of India is not to blame, but the great Branson himself!

Yeah. But exceptions are made for all kinds of people all of the time. It's really not a big deal.

In this case an exception was indeed made. But I don't think if I arrive in India without a visa I would be granted the same treatment.
The fun of flying... love it !!!
 
trvyyz
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Mon Apr 04, 2005 10:29 am

Quoting Zvezda (Reply 23):
If India desires to earn the respect of the international community, a Visa Upon Arrival program would be a good first step.

That's best joke I have heard in 2005.
 
TKMCE
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Mon Apr 04, 2005 2:19 pm

Quoting Lfutia (Thread starter):
If India desires to earn the respect of the international community, a Visa Upon Arrival program would be a good first step.

May be put it this way , if Canada and USA and UK and countless other countries want to earn the respect of the Indians, then they should stop literally considering every other Indian as a crook when it comes to granting them visas!


You know what is unique for Thailand, Mauritus,Seychelles, Srilanka, Nepal and may be 3 or 4 other countries to Indians???

They are the ONLY countries Indians can enter without a visa in advance!!!!

Whatever respect we Indians have in the international community is more than enough, THANK YOU SIR!!!! We certainly dont need to buy more respect by giving visa on arrival to all and sundry, esp to those countries which make us grovel for a visa on the first place!!!
 
mrniji
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Tue Apr 05, 2005 11:34 pm

Quoting Stealthpilot (Reply 28):
Mrniji, getting an Indian visa isn’t always as easy as you make it out to be. It took me a few days to get a visa, along with having to visit the consulate multiple times.

Nikhil, than you must have done something wrong. Indian regulations are very easy (and you being an NRI should not have a problem). In this matter, I defend the good old GOI of being effective. And sometimes (not in your case, being a NRI), scritinity of some people needs to be applauded. India remains a target for terrorism and 'bad practices' of some tourists (just read an article of India being increasingly a destination for Sex Tourism). It is in the interest of India to maintain or even impose a more-restrictive system. No need to apologize from the Indian side of being harsh in Visa matters, they do a much better job than many other countries

Quoting Misbeehavin (Reply 29):
However, I do think India should eliminate visa requirements completely for citizens of several countries. Other than reciprocity, I don't see what purpose it serves.

Recipricity can be a very important step toward a more egalitarian system. Hence, I do not agree with your comment here. I have had so many friends going through so much crap for only obtaining a few days visa to come to Europe - hence I am not happy with that list, though I agree some initiatives (Argentina, Fiji etc etc) to be great.. but not Europe and the US, please.. their systems need to be eased first before we can talk about an easier system.



TKMCE, I agree 100 %! We Indians are often so badly welcomed, though more and more can afford to have holidays abroad. this stereotyping through restricvtive Visa systems needs to be ceased by other countries before India takes the next step. In the past, we have often been the nation promoting better relations through unilateral moves.. enuff now, now we need adeqwuate answers reflecting the change of the world power.. then, we will have more respect for the international community Big grin
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
stealthpilot
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RE: Branson Almost Gets Deported From India

Wed Apr 06, 2005 6:22 am

Mrniji, well I agree that it can be a relatively hassle free process. Relatively. I don’t think I did much wrong, what’s there too do wrong it’s not like I mistyped something. In any case I see your point irrespective of whether I agree or not  Smile

I agree, as a country we certainly do need to remain vigilant because certain people do and will try and sneak into the country with the intent too harm. I am not saying let everyone in, changing visa requirements and revamping the system does not in any way imply that. Reciprocity is one solution, but it doesn’t always have to be a tit for tat scenario. Just because Americans or anyone else for that matter require Indians to obtain visas doesn’t necessarily mean we should do the same. We would benefit a lot (and I do mean a lot) if the Swiss, French, Germans, Brazilians, Japanese etc could enter without a visa (less than 60 days for example). If there are … ahhhh… suspicious people, don’t let them on the flight (in the host country) in the first place. It’s not the hardest thing to do! If they do get on the flight, stop them at immigration!
Our visa system is ancient, and hurts our country economically and in other ways. Changing things doesn’t automatically compromise safety
-Nikhil
eP007