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HindustanTimes Mon,29 Dec 2014

Bengali actor Rituparna Sengupta detained at Toronto airport

PTI  Kolkata, July 06, 2013
First Published: 21:29 IST(6/7/2013) | Last Updated: 21:29 IST(6/7/2013)

Bengali actress Rituprna Sengupta on Saturday said she was detained for five hours at the Toronto airport allegedly for not carrying valid visa.

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Sengupta, who was on her way to attend the premiere of Bengali film "Mukti" in Toronto on Sunday, was allowed in the country after Indian embassy intervened.

"I went through a big trauma as the Toronto airport authorities were denying me entry yesterday (Friday). I had come here for the premiere of 'Mukti'," Sengupta told PTI from Toronto.

The actress, 41, said she was interrogated for five hours despite possessing a B1 visa granted to her in 2010 and valid till 2015.

Sengupta said she had mistakenly applied for a fresh visa despite having one already which landed her in trouble with the airport authorities.

"They kept grilling me on why I had applied again despite already having a valid visa. They refused to listen to my explanation and kept asking whether I would work in Canada on this trip. It was one of the most traumatic episodes in my life," said the actor.

"The Indian embassy intervened later. I am here for North Atlantic Bengali Conference in Toronto as an esteemed guest. They realised their fault later," Sengupta added.

The actress claimed that her 80-year-old aunt, wheelchair-bound and a Canadian citizen who came to meet her at the airport, fell sick after the incident.

Sengupta said her phone was snatched immediately after she made a call to her husband.

"I couldn't contact the organisers, neither could I get back to my family as my phone was snatched just when I called up my husband. All they wanted was to make me head back to India by the same evening.

"But now I am looking forward to attend the screening and get the feedback," said the actress.

Film's director Reshmi Mitra, who could not attend the screening due to visa glitches, said the actress is still in shock. "Ritu is still trauma-struck... I have talked to her today. The organisers are taking every care of her," she said.


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