Indians and nationals of other countries, currently in the United Kingdom, whose visas are about to expire, but are ineligible to travel abroad, will not be penalized, the UK government announced.
The UK’s assurance was transmitted to the Indian High Commission, as there is a considerable number of Indian citizens who are unable to fly back to India, due to India’s latest decision to close the borders in order to contain the spread of coronavirus, VisaGuideWorld reports.
On March 15, India announced the entry ban for the UK as well as for the European Union countries.
“While that work is ongoing, foreign nationals in the UK do not need to be concerned about their immigration status: no one will be unfairly penalized for events beyond their control as a result of COVID-19,” the Foreign Office announced.
Ruchi Ghanashyam, the Indian high commissioner, urged all Indian citizens to follow the advice of National Health Services, as the flights to India will be suspended until March 31.
He added that Indian citizens would be updated about the reopening process of the flights. According to him, these are hard times, but the High Commission has had encouraging responses from all the persons who want to help stranded Indians.
“Indian citizens, including students stranded in the UK due to non-availability of flights or closure of hotels who have nowhere to stay, may reach us on [email protected] giving their details such as flight bookings, etc.” a statement of the mission of Indian citizens reads.
The Home Office said that the current situation would not take any action against students or workers who are ineligible to attend their studies or to work amid the coronavirus pandemic. Compliance action will not be taken against sponsors of the students or employees neither.
On March 13, India temporarily suspended tourist visas, until April 15, to halt the spread of COVID-19.