Kolkata, Dec 26 (IANS) West Bengal Minister and state chief of the Jamiat-Ulema-e-Hind Siddiqullah Chowdhury on Thursday accused the Bangladesh Deputy High Commission officials here of “misbehaving” with his staff, and claimed that he was denied visa “without specifying any reason”.
Chowdhury, who was scheduled to leave for Bangladesh on Thursday, said he had followed all due processes and completed all the formalities for a visa for what was to be a “private visit”.
The state Library Services Minister, considered one of the most prominent minority faces of the Mamata Banerjee government, was supposed to attend a seminar and also meet his relatives in Bangladesh before returning here on December 31.
“The government of India had given an NOC (no objection certificate). The Chief Minister (Mamata Banerjee) gave me permission. They misbehaved with my officials for three days, made them wait for two-three hours. After that they did not give visa. They didn’t give any reasons,” Chowdhury told IANS.
On reports quoting Bangladesh Deputy High Commission sources that he had wanted the visa on the same day, the Minister said: “They themselves told my officer, please wait, we will give the visa within two hours. They are not stating the truth”.
Giving a chronological description of events, Chowdhury said he had informed the Chief Minister around December 5, following which she sent the no-objection to Delhi on December 12. The next day the Union Home Ministry gave the go ahead.
“The form was filled up online on December 20, as per the Deputy High Commission’s request. My officers did the needful”.
A disappointed Chowdhury said it was a “loss of time and money” as he had already booked the tickets.
“This is an insult to the Bengali society, my state and country,” he said.
Chowdhury has been in national focus recently after he addressed a public meeting in the city on December 22 and threatened not to allow Union Home Minister Amit Shah out of the airport when he came on a visit unless the Citizenship Amendment Act was withdrawn immediately.
Despite efforts in this regard, IANS was unable contact the Deputy High Commission officials for comments.