HindustanTimes Thu,23 Oct 2014

Taslima meets Rajnath, may get long-term visa again

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, August 02, 2014
First Published: 21:34 IST(2/8/2014) | Last Updated: 07:36 IST(3/8/2014)

Controversial Bangladeshi author and poet Taslima Nasreen, who is banned from entering her country, is likely to get a renewed long-term residence permit.

Home ministry officials indicated the government was veering round to accepting the author’s request after a worried Nasreen met Union home minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday.

“I met Singh today (Saturday) and he assured me that my stay in India will be extended. I gave him my book ‘Wo Andhere Din’ (Those Dark Days) and he said my dark days are over,” Nasreen said.

Earlier, the home ministry had granted her a two-month permit while her request for extension was being scrutinised.

A citizen of Sweden, Taslima has been getting her Indian visa continuously since 2004. The author, who resides in South Delhi, found support for her demand for a long-term visa from several quarters. Press Council of India chairperson, retd, justice Markandey Katju batted for a permanent visa for Nasreen — who has been living in exile since 1994.  On Saturday, Katju tweeted, “@narendramodi Modiji, congratulations to your govt for giving residential visa to Nasreen.”

Nasreen had to leave Kolkata after violent protests in 2007. In 2010 the UPA indicated its reluctance to extend her resident permit but later relented.

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