HYDERABAD: Pakistani singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan was deported from India’s Hyderabad on Thursday morning, Times of India reported.
The singer who was scheduled to perform at a New Year’s Eve event was denied entry and asked to return to Abu Dhabi.
“Technical flaws” were cited by Immigration authorities at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport as the reason behind Rahat’s deportation.
Immigration officials said there was a rule violation in Rahat’s travel papers due to which he was deported.
“There was a technical issue with his documentation and he was deported to Abu Dhabi on the same flight,” an immigration official told TOI.
“If a Pakistani national enters through any other airport except the four metros, his or her travel to India cannot be recorded. So it is mandatory that they stick to the four ports. This system has been put in place to monitor the movement of Pakistani nationals in and out of the country,” an official said.
Indian immigration rules state Pakistani nationals can’t enter India through Hyderabad as legal points of entry by air are Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai.
The singer was asked to return to Abu Dhabi and travel to Hyderabad after entering the country by means of valid points of entry, an official told ToI.
Rahat took a flight to Delhi from Abu Dhabi Thursday evening, then boarded a chartered flight to Hyderabad airport, ToI sources claim.
Due to the unexpected deportation, the concert initially scheduled for 8pm was rescheduled for 11pm, a member of the event organising team confirmed.
After news of Rahat’s deportation spread, the event organisers were able to receive clearance from the relevant Union government departments, including the ministry of home affairs, making it possible for the Pakistani singer to return to Hyderabad.