“Suspicious”: After Indian Husband disappears, HC Refuses to extend Visa of Bangladeshi Woman

A woman from Bangladesh filed a plea with the Karnataka High Court asking for an extension of her stay in India, but it was denied. The woman’s Indian spouse is vanishing, and the dependent visa (X-1 visa) cannot be extended without his approval. Her interactions with an organization called SSG in Bangladesh, which had ties to the military there, raised suspicions about her actions in India, the High Court further noted.

The woman had been employed at the Thailand Embassy in Dhaka between 2003 and 2005. Raktima Khanum, 46, filed the petition before the HC, and Justice M Nagaprasanna heard it. The woman stated that she had fallen in love with an Indian citizen and Bengaluru resident named Janardhana Reddy.

Following their December 2017 marriage, the woman revealed that Reddy had become an Islamic convert. The woman claimed that after her tourist visa expired, she returned to Bangladesh and the couple, who had been living in Chennai, soon lost each other. Upon reapplying, her visa was changed to an entry visa (a dependent visa) with a validity period of February 2020. Because she was married to an Indian, her request for a six-month visa extension was granted.

A second extension was granted, this time until June 21, 2023. Since she was on a dependent visa, the authorities demanded that she provide an undertaking or consent from her sponsor, parents, and spouse when she requested another extension.

In this regard, she made an approach to the high court. Her attorney argued that since her spouse is running away, she is unable to provide a consent form.

However, the HC stated that given the circumstances of the case, it is unable to order the authorities to extend the visa. “The power of the Government of India to expel nationals of other countries who overstay in the nation without any document is absolute & unfettered,” the High Court stated in its January 5 ruling, dismissing the petition. The government, the FRRO, and the Bureau of Immigration would be restricted in their discretion if the petitioner were granted any kind of indulgence out of sympathy, especially in situations where there is even the slightest possibility of a threat to the nation’s security.”

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