Srinagar/New Delhi: Two snowshoers from Kashmir have alleged they have been denied visa to the US due to “current (US) policy” even as American Embassy in New Delhi maintained that Indians are not affected by the recent executive order of President Donald Trump.
“Indian Snowshoers Denied Visas, due to ‘current (US) policy’. This from our good friend Abid Khan, from Kashmir, minutes ago in our Facebook Messaging,” Clyde Rabideau, Mayor of the Village of Saranac Lake in New York, wrote on his Facebook page.
When contacted, US Embassy Spokesperson in Delhi said, “For privacy reasons we cannot discuss specific visa cases. However, we note that Indian citizens are not affected by the recent executive order.”
The snowshoers reportedly denied visas are Abid Khan and Tanveer Hussain.
The duo were scheduled to participate in the World Snowshoe Championships at Saranac in New York from February 24-25. They were invited by World Snow-Shoe Federation for the championship.
According to the conversation posted by Rabideau on his Facebook page, Khan informed him about the denial of the visa.
“Sorry sir, Visa denied,” Khan wrote to the Mayor, a Democrat.
Khan claimed all the paperwork for both the athletes was in order including “local Government sponsorship, federation, your support letter, my financial background. They did not missed (sic) any supporting document.”
“The lady officer at US embassy in New Delhi after checking all docs (sic), just went inside into another room. After returning she said ‘Sorry, due to our current policy we cant issue you visa’,” Khan said.
Rabideau, while promising help with the visa, said “this will not stand”.
The athletes could not be contacted for comments.
Trump signed an executive order last week barring citizens from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Sudan from entering the country for 90 days and suspended the admission of all refugees for 120 days. The order indefinitely bans entry of those fleeing from war-torn Syria.