now that i'm done with the visa process, i can finally blog this! i HATE all visa processes! the last time was a nightmare with the US visa. this time, a lot better with the U.K.
but i like the UK. i can relate to it. their questions are so desi! i could imagine a pot-bellied indian govt official asking them to me. but of course, they're nice. and really helpful, if u must know. really. unlike what any indian govt official has been to me, so far.
at the beginning of the application, they insist we must submit our original documents. because, to quote them "It is better to explain why you do not have a document than to submit a false document in its place."
after asking me the basic details, we come to the part of children.
do you have any children?
what amazed me was the tone of the questions that would follow if i said YES.
where do these children live?
where are these children now?
uhh... am glad i don't have kids yet!
so i click no, and move on...
will any other children be traveling with you?
hain? WHY would i want OTHER children with me? i like kids n all... but i don't like traveling with them. really.
then, there are three pages asking me to 'fess up if i'm a criminal. i doubt a criminal would cave-in to the nature of the questions, but i guess they need to ask them by security standards.
however, while going through them, i was tempted to say yes when i was asked if i have been involved in anti-social activities in the past. i asked vin... "uhh... is turning up nose at new desi neighbor an anti-social activity?? do they need to know that? will it affect my visa app?" i followed vin's advice and said "no" to the question... if u must ask. so now i presume i'm quite social.
Have you, ever been a member of, or given support to an organisation that has been concerned in terrorism?
wishful answer: if you grant me a visa, i'm a hungama employee. we regularly terrorize our clients and competitors. we actually take pride in that... but i guess that doesn't count. if u mean national terrorism, then no. corporate? yes! :)
actual answer: NO.
Have you engaged in any other activities that might indicate that you may not be considered a person of good character?
wishful answer: there may be people who think so. but i wouldn't include them in my references, u know. and will someone please define "good character" to me?!
actual answer: NO.
this one had me completely foxed.
what do u intend to do in the UK?
erm... i dunno... travel around. see the place, the people that ruled us for so many years. i've heard it's a beautiful country...
do u have family here? do you intend to visit them?
HAHAHA... i'd love to not visit any family, u know! anywhere!
and then, u come to my favorite part... which made me feel like i'm going through an interrogation by an aunt in dilli or kanpur...
how much do you earn every month?
how much do you spend every month?
how much does your husband earn?
What is the cost to you personally, of your stay there?
How much of your total monthly income is given to your family members and other dependents?
Who will pay for your travel?
Who will pay for your food & acco?
erm... am so glad i knew the answers. and i guess they're correct too.
u know, end of the day... i AM glad i got my visa. i'd have gone through this for nothing otherwise! of course, now i'm also prepared to attend family weddings and give the "sahi jawaab!"
disclaimer: this may not be verbatim, unless said so... this is what i remember. and like most things in this blog, please take this with a pinch of salt.