The Delhi High Court on Friday issued a notice to the Centre on a petition challenging its decision to ban New Zealand YouTuber Karl Edward Rice, popularly known as Karl Rock, from entering India, Live Law reported.
Rice’s wife Manisha Malik had filed the petition against his blacklisting and the cancellation of his visa on July 10. She claimed that there was no official communication from authorities about this.
Malik had told the court that her husband held an X-2 visa, which is issued to the spouses and children of Indian citizens. His visa was valid till May 2024, she added. Malik said that her husband followed all visa rules, including the requirement to exit India every six months.
However, officials from the Union home ministry said that Rice had violated the rules by conducting business on a spouse visa, according to Bar and Bench.
Malik told the court that her husband left India in October 2020 but wasn’t able to return as the Indian government rejected his application for a visa. She argued that the government was violating her rights under Article 21 (life and personal liberty) of the Constitution by separating her from her husband.
On Friday, Justice Rekha Palli said the Centre should justify its decision. “You may be right in this. It is absolutely your prerogative, to have him in the country or not,” she told the Centre, according to Bar and Bench. “But it has to be justified on record.”
The judge sought responses from the Centre, the Bureau of Immigration and the Foreigner Regional Registration Office in Delhi. The court will now hear the matter on September 23.