The ordeal of 16 students from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, who had gone to the US seeking admission in educational institutions there but were sent back from New York, continued despite landing back home as they alleged that they had been kept waiting for around six hours at the international airport here over some ticket issue.
The students, who landed at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport on Saturday night, claimed they were stranded for around six hours at the airport due to some issue about the return ticket fares with the airline they travelled in. They also said that some authorities at the airport took longer time for checking their documents.
The parents of these students approached Telangana Deputy Chief Minister Mohammad Mahmood Ali, who had landed at the airport at that time from Srinagar, and sought his intervention in the matter.
“I asked the airline officials and also authorities to first allow the students to leave the airport. I told them they have already faced problems in the US. After I took up the matter, the students were allowed to leave the airport,” Mahmood Ali said. He said that some parents complained to him about the authorities taking a long time in checking the documents of the students.
“Despite having all the necessary documents in order, we have been sent back… We are trying to know the exact reasons,” one of the students told a TV channel. “US officials (at New York Airport) interrogated the Indian students,” he alleged.
Another student said, “We have already spent Rs 3-4 lakh and now after being sent back it is financial loss for us”. On December 21 last year, Air India had stopped 19 students from boarding its flight to San Francisco at the international airport here on the grounds that the two universities to which they had been admitted were under “scrutiny”.
The AI also cited the plight of 14 students who had travelled to San Francisco after enrolling in two universities and were deported. However, the universities namely Silicon Valley in San Jose, California and North Western Polytechnic College in Fremont, California had denied reports of them being “blacklisted” by the US government.
On January 2, over 20 students, who had returned from the US to Hyderabad, had alleged that they were “ill-treated” and some of them were even handcuffed at the New York airport by the US authorities.