Shahrukh Khan and VIP Syndrome

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Shahrukh Khan and VIP Syndrome
Apr 19, 2012 09:49 am | Agniveer

This special feature is written by Shri Joginder Singh, IPS, ex-CBI Director, India. We are touched by his mail where he reiterated his desire to have the “truth out”.

Funny is the word which aptly fits the antics and tantrums the Government of India, throws, on trivialities. A film actor, was detained at New York airport sometimes back and this time in April, 2012, at an airport close to New York.. The Government has called the film artist a VIP, who according to it, literally should have the run of any country. I thought I should look up as to what the VIP as in the Indian senses stands for. I found the following interesting interpretations of the word;

Very Important Person

Visually Impaired Person

Value Improving Practice

Very Impatient Person

Verification Integration Plan

Very Idiotic Person

Vanity Is Perfection

Vulnerable Infants Program

Video Instructional Program

Very Intelligent Person

(We are not sure in which of the above VIP categories does this film actor fit. But definitely it is not the first and the last…Editors)
 A film artist waiting for 75 minutes, at the airport, for his clearance, and it appeared to the Government of India, as if Heaven had fallen. Incidentally, neither his work, nor his job exposes him to any security threat or any danger to his life. Suddenly, how a person working in film industry becomes a VVVVVIP, when there are umpteen number of businessmen, industrialists, builders or civil servants doing much more important work?

How has he suddenly become a VIP in the eyes of the Government of India, which has gone overboard to take up his case of some 75 minutes delay for entry into USA?

Where ever I have gone abroad, I have scrupulously avoided going even near the Indian Embassy, because the impression, with a few exceptions, all Embassies give is that if you have any problem, solve yourself or go to hell on your own.

Except for an unhelpful and rarely helpful receptionist, you cannot get past him or her to see or speak to somebody higher in the hierarchy in the missions.

Incidentally, when you go to other countries, you have to follow their procedures. Has any body ever checked as to how long it takes to enter our country, even with a valid visa and how long it takes Indians on Indian Passport to clear all the formalities, even in India?

Why are we paranoid about the position we hold? In this Government is guilty of pampering the film artist.

To show that the person in question is an International Celebrity is a travesty of the facts. He may be known in India or where Indian Population lives. But if I were to ask, anybody as to who is the top Hero or Heroine Of USA or UK or France, or Pakistan, or Sri Lanka or Malaysia or Thailand, or of other countries, answer would be a fumble or I do not know.

Every country is free to adopt any system to safeguard its security, and if it does not suit anybody, he or she need not visit those States or Nations. The External Affairs Ministry has patted its back, that its officials got him cleared in 75 Minutes!

It is a shame, that Indian Authorities, would go to this extent to help a film artist, where as I am aware of the facts, how Indians abroad are harassed abroad by the same missions. In one case, an Indian in Canada, who wanted to visit India, to see his ailing mother was denied visa, despite my pointing it to the External Affairs Minister.

What point is the Ministry trying to prove is not clear? Does it want to convey that it takes up the causes of every Indian or of a select group or community or religion?

It appears that instead of serving all the Indians, Indian Missions are out only to rescue a select group or type of people.

What is wrong, if before the entry to USA, its officials wish to verify the credentials of the visitors or people going out? I myself have faced this problem in our own country, as name Joginder Singh is Common to all types of criminals including terrorists or wanted people. I have patiently waited till I am cleared.

If the name of the film artist is similar to any terrorists, it is natural for the USA to have verified it. It is because, of the stringent security measures, that USA has not allowed, any terrorist incident to take place, in that country, after 9/11. On the contrary, terrorists have struck at will, in Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Surat, Bangalore and many other places, because of either no policy or policy of willing to strike but afraid to wound.

It was decent of USA to have apologized, for any inconvenience caused, to the film artist. But it was not really called for, nor is justified, as a courtesy.

USA has denied religious profiling. Even if it was done, there is nothing wrong with it, as most of the terrorist attacks are led by the Muslims.

(As a matter of fact 29 out of 30 Most Wanted Terrorists by FBI and all of Most Wanted 50 Terrorists of India are Muslims. All terrorists listed in Reward for Justice program of USA (around 50) are Muslims. They are not merely Muslims, but those who claim that they are indulging in such acts as per inspiration of their Holy Book and to establish their religion as only religion of world….Editors)

I have seen in the Middle East Muslim countries, very carefully scrutinizing the entrants to their country from Pakistan, for the same reason. It is as much the Right of USA as of India, to regulate the entry of anybody to their country, whether it suits somebody or not.

When in Commerce Ministry, the Secretary of the Ministry had his tale of woe, while leaving India. He told me that every time, he went abroad, he was questioned and his antecedents checked. So to ward off, any such contingency he would write clearly, on the departure and arrival form, as Avtar Singh Gill, IAS, Secretary Ministry of Commerce, Government of India. He said that he had to do as a number of Sikh Terrorists had the name of Avtar Singh.

Sometimes we have to pay for the sins of our namesakes, and best is to bear and grin, as George Fernandez and Former President APJ Kalam did. If India is slack in controlling the ingress of the terrorists, as the numerous attacks by them have shown, , as well as by Maoists and Naxalites shown, why should we expect USA to follow, what we are doing or not doing. We should not try to appease any body as Churchil rightly said; “An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile —- hoping it will eat him last”.

I can only say that Government should introspect and assess, whether it was worth it to make so much fuss, on a Non VIP and a film artist, who speaks the lines written and thought of by others.

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One Response

  1. @ I have read the post and the information which you have shared that is really good and useful.


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