Your Excellency, The High Commissioner Of India
I refer to the India Government's decision to increase the India Visa fees from £42 to £92 from 17th January 2013.
This is more than 100% increase at a time when most British families are suffering hardship due to the economic conditions. You may be aware that sometimes British Indians do not have a choice but to visit India because of religious reasons or family celebration reasons so for them it is a necessity to visit the country of origin i.e India. If one was choosing India as a place to visit as a Tourist then one may decide on some other destination because of this terrible increase in Visa fees but if it is a necessity then one does not have a choice.
Furthermore, you may be aware that British Indians do like to visit India usually as a family and for an average family of four the new visa fees would be almost £400!. Most British Indian families prefer to take their Children born in Britain to visit India to help them make connections with the country of origin. There is already a 'trend' developing amongst British born Indians around the whole issue of Country of origin and having some 'loyalty/kinship' to India. This huge increase in Visa fees charges will not help to improve the already difficult situation many British Indian parents face in this sense.
Furthermore, there are lot of elderly people (pensioners) on low income who visit India through organised tours. They will find it very hard to pay £92 visa fees.
I suspect what I have said above applies to Indian Americans, Indian Canadians etc.
On one hand the Indian Government is encouraging the world wide Indian diaspora to support India in many different areas but on the other hand it gives out 'wrong' messages to the same people by increasing Visa charges to sky high levels. I know the visa increase will apply to all British citizens and not only to British Indians but the impact would be very serious on British Indians in a number of different ways.
I am not saying the charges should not be increased. If they need to be increased then it should be a reasonable increase.
I would be grateful if you would convey my views based upon the angry feedback I have received from many people in Leicester to the Prime Ministers office in India with a request that the Indian Government should reconsider the level of Fees increase .
I look forward to receiving your reply.
Chairman – British Hindu Voice
British Hindu Voice
Unit 12, 37 Lewisher Rd, Leicester, LE4 9LR. UK
Main Email - Info@BritishHinduVoice.org.uk
Alternative Email - BritishHinduVoice@gmail.com
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