New Delhi: A video of an Indian officer in the Consulate General of India in New York, refusing a woman a visa and telling her to “take your money and go”, has gone viral on social media.
After the 24 November incident, disciplinary proceedings were issued against the officer, according to a statement released by the Consulate General of India in New York. The matter was resolved and the visas issued “expeditiously”, the consulate stated.
However, the video of the incident continues to do the rounds on the internet, garnering over 45,000 views on Twitter.
In the video, the officer at the consulate can be seen handing the woman her documents, as well as some cash—purportedly the amount she paid for the visa application. “Just take your money and go out. You will not receive visa. That’s it!” the officer can be heard saying.
“Why are you so angry?” the woman can be heard asking.
Another man, who was shooting the video, can be heard saying that the officer’s behaviour was “barbaric” and that the consulate could not deny someone a visa without providing a reason.
Later, another officer in the video can be seen telling the man and woman to stop recording as there is a policy against the use of cellular phones in the consulate.
Disciplinary proceedings against officer
On 27 November, the consulate stated: “We have taken note of the complaint. The Consulate maintains the highest standards of public service. This particular incident does not reflect either its norms or its guidelines of public functioning. The Consul General has personally reviewed the matter. Based on the information presented, it has been decided to institute disciplinary proceedings against the concerned (sic) officer.”
In a separate statement, the consulate said the applicants were eventually issued visas and that the conduct of all people involved in the matter is being reviewed.
“Visas were issued to the applicants expeditiously. Full facts in the case, including the conduct of all parties involved, are being reviewed by the Consul General. We remain committed to efficient and courteous consular services at all times, as we have been delivering these through the unprecedented challenges posed by the Covid-19,” it stated.
Actor and talk-show host Simi Garewal tweeted the video Wednesday, claiming the woman wanted a visa to visit India after learning her father had died.
“Her father had died & she wanted a visa for India. This is the obnoxious behaviour of an Indian officer in the New York Consulate towards her,” read the caption. The actress also urged External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar to take note of the incident.
(Edited by Saikat Niyogi)