HC Deb 25 June 2002 vol 387 c788W
Mr. Vaz

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many appeals were lodged against visa refusals in(a) Mumbai, (b) New Delhi and (c) Islamabad in 2001; and when he will re-open the entry clearance operation in (i) Mumbai, (ii) New Delhi and (iii) Islamabad. [64231]

Mr. Mike O'Brien

The number of appeals received in 2001 by Mumbai, New Delhi and Islamabad are shown below:

  • Mumbai: 733
  • Islamabad: 4,941
  • New Delhi: 1,396.

Entry clearance operations in Mumbai, New Delhi and Islamabad are not closed.

We are currently operating a restricted visa service in New Delhi and Mumbai. Since 4 June, New Delhi and Mumbai have only accepted settlement applications, urgent medical and compassionate cases and drop box applications for limited categories of travellers including previous visitors and returning residents.

Since 6 June Islamabad has been offering a very limited service, accepting applications through Fedex from returning residents and urgent medical and compassionate cases, including settlement and family visit applications in these categories.

We are keeping service and staffing levels under constant review. Our aim is a phased resumption of normal service at the security situation permits and staffing levels build up.

From 24 June New Delhi and Mumbai will be extending the service offered to accept applications in a broad category of 'straightforward' traveller.

Also from 24 June the visa service in Islamabad will be extended to include applications from:

  • a business visitor with a letter of invitation from a company in the UK who has travelled to the UK within the last three years and has evidence of this travel;
  • holder of a valid UK Work Permit;
  • a member of an airline crew on a route which passes through the UK;
  • a seaman with a previous visa for the same purpose. Applications must be accompanied by the seaman's book and a letter from a recognised shipping company
  • the spouse or child (under 18) of one of the above categories, and accompanying the main applicant to the UK.