Would Using a Tourist Visa Too Much Cause Problems?

#1 Dec 17th, 2017, 15:48
Join Date:
Dec 2017
Location:
United States
Posts:
8
  • SomePlaceFar is offline
#1
Hey all,

I'm sorry if this is a rather goofy question.

I'm an American citizen with a 5-year, multiple-entry tourist visa. Since receiving my papers in 2013, I've visited India a good eight times. Most of my visits have ranged from between one and three months at a time.

This year, I've been in India for nearly four months and will be leaving around the five-month mark (greetings from Bastar!).

My visa expires in March of 2018. I was hoping to come back for a couple months in summer, to catch up with friends, learn a bit more Hindi, and catch up with somebody I've been dating.

However, I am a little worried that my frequent visits could pose a problem when I apply for a 10-year visa in March or April. Would the frequent trips be viewed with suspicion? I'm in my mid-twenties and still in university.

I've read some strange stories of people who have been issued Indian tourist visas in the past be rejected for no apparent reason. Seems like most of the time they were working with churches or missionary groups, though, either in India or in their home country.

Really sorry if this seems like a stupid question, but I'd be crushed if I couldn't get another visa.
#2 Dec 17th, 2017, 16:47
Join Date:
Dec 2017
Location:
United States
Posts:
8
  • SomePlaceFar is offline
#2
Another concern I have:

Two or three months ago, I was out with a female friend. She got extremely drunk. I had to take her back home with me, since she couldn't return to her PG.

Unfortunately, she wasn't able to make it up the stairs by herself. She passed out, started making noises, and upset the neighbors. A local drunk heard the commotion and, upon seeing a foreign man with an Indian woman, became violent. After breaking a window and trying to assault me, he called the police (on us).

Local sub-inspector and some other constables showed up. They were not informed about the altercation -- the drunkard apologized -- but took everyone's identification and recorded my passport and visa details. He asked me when I was leaving India. After taking my friend to the hospital (she'd passed out but woke back up), she told them she was fine, that we were friends, and she just wanted to go home with me rather than be dropped at her PG. They left me and the girl alone and I never heard back from there. However, my friends -- who were renting the flat -- were extorted for 2,000 Rs ("Why are you renting a place when your families live here? Why was there a drunk girl inside your flat? Is your name on the lease?")

Although me and my friend never heard from the police again, I'm still concerned that the contact could have been recorded. I don't think there's anything especially illegal about a foreigner and an Indian girl going to a bar and getting drunk together, but I am aware we weren't abiding by every cultural norm.

That's another concern for me. Would records of a foreigner having contact with police be passed to immigration services? We didn't break the law, there was no FIR lodged. But the fact that the police extorted my friends, who owned the flat, concerned me a lot.

Sorry for the weird questions and long explanations.

Everyone keeps telling me not to worry and that visa/passport info would have been collected no matter what (they also checked everyone else's Aadhaar cards) and that it was a matter of policy. But this is the first and only time I've ever had such a problem arise in India (or any foreign country).
#3 Dec 17th, 2017, 17:05
Join Date:
Oct 2009
Location:
NOTTINGHAM
Posts:
1,011
  • OldandRambling is offline
#3
I guess if the police are called to any incident involving a foreign citizen, they are going to cover their backs and record your name, etc, etc.
The fact that no action was taken makes this seem like a non issue to me. The opportunistic cash taken from your friends makes it less likely that there is an official report somewhere of their actions... All just my opinions of course.

The immigration officer has the last word, even if you have a visa. Try to have a good back story for your frequent tourist visits, if questioned.

No one can know what will happen untill you apply for the next visa... You can worry each day, or just try to hope for the best, it won't affect the outcome!

Ed.
#4 Dec 17th, 2017, 17:26
Join Date:
Dec 2017
Location:
United States
Posts:
8
  • SomePlaceFar is offline
#4
Thanks for the response!

I'll try to keep my anxiety under control. I've never had so many strange experiences in a single trip!

I don't think providing an explanation for my frequent visits would be any hassle. My first long-term relationship was with a Delhi girl. Made a lot of friends around the NCR and Mumbai. Keeping up with acquaintances and new friends is one of my main motivations for continuously returning.

At any rate, I've traveled extensively to other countries, too. It's not like I'm just in and out of India and India alone.

Guess I'll wait and see. Most of the "visa rejection" stories I've read online seem to involve folks who could have been read as potential missionaries (worked for a church, were going to church conference, etc), or had overstayed their visas.

Aside from frequent visits and that one encounter, I've never had any problems. I've only been asked once at immigration whether I was working in India, and it seemed they were asking the same thing to everyone. Every other time it's been in and out.
#5 Dec 18th, 2017, 12:52
Join Date:
Aug 2006
Location:
Homeless
Posts:
19,073
  • nycank is offline
#5
Quote:
Originally Posted by SomePlaceFar View Post
I'm sorry if this is a rather goofy question.

I'm an American citizen with a 5-year, multiple-entry tourist visa. Since receiving my papers in 2013, I've visited India a good eight times.


My visa expires in March of 2018.


I am a little worried that my frequent visits could pose a problem when I apply for a 10-year visa in March or April. Would the frequent trips be viewed with suspicion? I'm in my mid-twenties and still in university.
You should not have any problems. However, being in a University and taking long trips mid semester to India might raise flags. Eons ago there was a perception that some of the Indian consulates in US were rather more vigilant than others... YMMV
#6 Dec 18th, 2017, 14:58
Join Date:
Oct 2004
Location:
Chennai, India
Posts:
68,625
  • Nick-H is offline
#6

Would Using a Tourist Visa Too Much Cause Problems?

If police record things, they give themselves work. I doubt that there was ever any official record of your adventure.

... Just my humble assumption/opinion
~
Life gets aadhar every day.
.
#7 Dec 18th, 2017, 15:03
Join Date:
Dec 2017
Location:
United States
Posts:
8
  • SomePlaceFar is offline
#7
Quote:
Originally Posted by nycank View Post You should not have any problems. However, being in a University and taking long trips mid semester to India might raise flags. Eons ago there was a perception that some of the Indian consulates in US were rather more vigilant than others... YMMV
Thanks, nycank.

I plan on including both my university and work information on the 'Additional Particulars' form necessary for the 10-year visa application.

Do you have any input on the situation outlined in the second post?

I've calmed down somewhat over the past several days. From the way it all panned out, there didn't seem to be any sort of legal consequence for anyone involved. While the flat-owner had to deal with extortion, I was never contacted by law enforcement again.

Since we didn't do anything illegal -- even if there was a record of what happened -- I don't think I have much to stress about?

Apologies for the long post. Writing it all down helps me sort it out, too. I have to assume if that situation was going to be an issue, it would have become one by now (that incident happened well over a month and a half ago).
#8 Dec 18th, 2017, 15:11
Join Date:
Dec 2017
Location:
United States
Posts:
8
  • SomePlaceFar is offline
#8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick-H View Post If police record things, they give themselves work. I doubt that there was ever any official record of your adventure.

... Just my humble assumption/opinion
Thank you for the reassurance.

The sub-inspector did hold onto my passport for sometime. I believe he was confiscating it in case there was any foul play, considering the condition of my female friend.

He didn't take my passport information until handing it back to me. That, too, seemed like something of an afterthought.

The more I think about the situation, the less worried I get.

Thank you all for the feedback so far.
#9 Dec 18th, 2017, 17:54
Join Date:
Feb 2011
Location:
London
Posts:
1,431
  • NomadicBoo is offline
#9
India has a notoriously slow legal system, so by the time any incident is reported on paper to making it through to a computer at immigration you will already be dead .

I wouldn't worry if it were me!

NB
"See the World, then see India - because the World is an anti-climax"

Posting Rules

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Forum Rules»
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.3.2
© IndiaMike.com 2018
Page Load Success