YouTuber Karl Rock blacklisted for violating visa norms, says MHA
Karl Rock, a YouTuber of New Zealand origin, had claimed that the Indian government blacklisted him without specifying any reason and had canceled his visa last year after he left India to travel to Dubai and Pakistan. Now, officials of the Ministry of Home Affairs have revealed that Rock had been blacklisted for violating certain terms and conditions of his visa. Here's more.
Rock claimed GoI was keeping him away from family here
On July 9, the vlogger, whose real name is Karl Edward Rice, shared a video on his YouTube Channel, titled, "Why I Haven't Seen My Wife in 269 Days #Blacklist." Currently staying in New Zealand, Rock explained he has been away from his wife Manisha Malik and family for 269 days because the Indian government "separated" them by adding him to their blacklist.
He wasn't given reason behind him getting blacklisted
"I left India to go travel Dubai and Pakistan in October 2020 and upon leaving they canceled my visa at the airport," said Rock. He tried to get a new one in Dubai but was refused. "Before someone is added to the Blacklist they're meant to be given the reason, and time to reply. I wasn't." He has also started a petition at Change.org.
Rock even appealed to New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern
He was restricted for 'doing business activities on tourist visa'
Speaking out to his 1.79 million YouTube subscribers, Rock mentioned a petition in the Delhi High Court was also filed to "request my name be removed from the blacklist so I can return home." An External Affairs Ministry official, however, told ThePrint the restrictions were imposed after Rock was "found doing business activities on a tourist visa and also violating certain other visa conditions."
Rock did not submit his income tax returns: MHA
A source in the Ministry of Home Affairs told the portal further that Rock had "indulged in economic activities without informing the FRRO (Foreigners Regional Registration Office)," and also didn't submit his income tax returns, among other things.
He's barred for one year, an MHA official informed ANI
Here's a rundown of his visa history and violations
Reportedly, Rock has visited various restricted areas in India, including Nagaland and Jammu & Kashmir, without any requisite permission. He had a tourist visa from 2016 to 2018, which was renewed till 2023. In 2019, he was given an X-2 visa for marrying an Indian individual. Still, he was not supposed to indulge in business activities, which he did via monetizing YouTube content.
Rock even published a book, covered CAA protests violating rules
This is not all. Publishing a book Indian Survival Guided, covering the anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act protests on YouTube, and uploading a video titled Do Indians eat beef? guide to eating beef in India have contributed to the government's decision, according to reports.