Austria turning down Pakistani Christians’ visa applications on Religious ground

(Photo credit should read ARIF ALI/AFP/Getty Images)

ISLAMABAD: Austria has imposed security fee for Pakistani citizens who  want to visit Austria and pursuing an unannounced discriminatory policy of turning down Christian visa applicants from Pakistan.

According to the well placed sources, Austria reportedly imposing security fee for Pakistani visitors and turning down hundreds of Pakistani Christian’s visa applications during the recent years, without mentioning any solid reasons ,which cannot be challenged at any other forum, a study and background interviews have revealed.

A well placed source said during the recent year visa officer at Austrian embassy has rejected dozens of Christian’s application on religious discriminatory bases who wished to attend  university and other religious ceremonies.

Austrian Ambassador Dr. Brigitta Blaha in Islamabad officially rejected the claims and said that there is no refusal policy for visa applicants coming from Pakistan (or any other country), whichever religion they belong to. However the Embassy has to respect the relevant Austrian and EU regulations. Visa can therefore only be granted when all requirement for issuance are fulfilled.

Mr. Faisal Ashar, a Pakistani Christian from Karachi has got his admission at FH Joanneum, University of Applied Sciences, Austria in “Electronic and Computer Engineering” and paid the tuition fee and other required charges including the cost contribution fee for Austrian Students Union but his application was rejected on discriminatory. Talking to Online Faisal Asher said that the Austrian Embassy in Islamabad wrote a letter to collect the letter personally. He has to travel all the way from Karachi to Islamabad to collect the rejected application.” He described that he paid about Rs. 2 million as tuition fee to the said University and after rejection of the visa not only the University will deduct the charges but also spent some reasonable amount visa submission and collection of rejected application.

“I deposit Rs. 14,000 as visa fees and the Embassy welcomed that because they were getting money against the application. They should have refused to receive the subsequent application if they had cogent reason to turn down my application”, he added.


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