//Name hits visa wall

Name hits visa wall

New Delhi, Feb. 21 (PTI): The US embassy has allegedly denied travel permission to a senior central government official because his first name is “Ali”.

“They apparently had a problem with my name as my name had some resemblance in their alert system,” said Ali Ahmed Khan, the regional director of the Council for Leather Exports. “So they told me that my case would be referred to Washington.”

Khan was refused visa despite being armed with recommendation letters from the external affairs ministry and the commerce minister under whose purview his department operates.

He was informed about the embassy decision on February 13 — two days before his scheduled departure. Khan was to lead a 25-member delegation of leather businessmen to the US. The foreign ministry had given a letter stating that his trip to the US was essential because he had to coordinate things for India’s participation at an exhibition to be held there soon.