Home Art/Culture Bihar Minister accuses MEA of delaying clearance for foreign trip

Bihar Minister accuses MEA of delaying clearance for foreign trip

By TCN Staff Reporter

New Delhi: A delay in political clearance from the Ministry of External Affairs for travelling abroad left Abdul Bari Siddiqui, Finance Minister, Bihar, ruing a missed opportunity to interact with residents of Bihar and Jharkhad residing in Doha, Qatar and a chance to perform Umrah.

Siddiqui was scheduled to be the chief guest at the ‘Bihar Diwas’ celebrations , organised by the Indian Association of Bihar and Jharkhand (IABJ) Qatar on April 22, following which he had expressed his willingness to travel to Saudi Arabia and perform the Umrah.

Speaking with Twocircles.net, Siddiqui said, “After I received clearance from the State government, my office forwarded the application to the MEA for political clearance. I really wanted to visit Doha to interact with the residents of Bihar and Jharkhand to discuss the states’ progress and achievements along with the steps to take in future.”

Siddiqui added that after he received the invitation, he sought clearance from the state government and having received the same, he forwarded his application to the MEA. “Despite sending my application weeks in advance, there was no communication from the Ministry and my office finally received a reply only on April 26, five days after I was supposed to leave,” he said. His office sent a letter the following day to the Ministry, pointing that the delay had meant that his visits had been cancelled.

The IABJ confirmed to Twocircles.net that it had sent an invite to Siddiqui as early as March 16, following which the Minister had started taking steps to get a visa for the event. The association also added that it was not until April 20 that they came to know that Siddiqui will not be attending the program.
The IABJ is a socio cultural non-profit organization, established in 2000, functioning in Qatar for the community development and welfare of people of the community at large and people of Bihar and Jharkhand in particular.