US consulate imposes lifetime ban on 200 visa applicants from South India

March 13th, 2008 - 9:55 pm ICT by admin  

Chennai, Mar 13 (ANI): The US Consulate on Thursday imposed a lifetime ban on 200 visa applicants from the south Indian film industry barring them from travelling to the United States for having used “false credentials” to apply for visas.

The American consulate in Chennai announced that around 200 small-time Indian film actors and directors have been banned from travelling to US for a lifetime in the visa racket case.

The consulate sprung to action after they received reports that one Flora Shiny (29), an actor, who along with two others had furnished fake documents.

Shiny has been booked for illegal human trafficking and along with the others and has been sent to judicial custody for 15 days.

Speaking to the members of the media, US Consulate General David Hopper said that while the world recognizes and admires the Indian film industry, cases like this bring disrepute.

“So far we have identified about 200 visa applicants who participated in this or similar schemes. Some of these applicants received visas. The councillor has revoked the visas of those who are in India, details about other people have been passed to law enforcement authorities in United States, said Hoopper.

Meanwhile south Indian actor, Sarath Kumar - president of South Indian Film Artist Association, also announced that if the lists of the persons who committed fraud are given to the south Indian film artist association, it will debar the concerned person from the association and will not allow them to take part in any of the film industry programmes.

“This is going to be definitely a problem for the industry in future so I think everybody will cooperate in this issue. If they send out the names they will definitely debar them from the association. The member producer council will definitely look into it and debar them from being in the association or council,” said Kumar.

On the other hand Hopper said that about 1,500 visa applications were received everyday at the Consulate, and there will not be any cut in the number of visas to Indians, following the busting of a visa racket. (ANI)

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