A Passport Seva Kendra officer accused of harassing an inter-faith couple in Lucknow has been transferred with immediate effect, PTI reported on Thursday.
Regional Passport officer Piyush Verma said the couple was issued passports and a showcause notice has been issued to the officer. “We have also sent the report to the Ministry of External Affairs for further action,” Verma said assuring necessary action against the official.
Verma, who expressed regret over the incident, said steps will be taken to ensure it is not repeated.
On Wednesday, Mohammad Anas Siddiqui and his wife Tanvi Seth alleged that an officer named Vikas Mishra asked Anas to convert to Hinduism and Tanvi to change her name or her passport application would be rejected.
The shocked couple tweeted to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, asking her to intervene.
Narrating the incident, Anas said: “When he (Mishra) saw my name under the spouse category on the documents, he asked Tanvi to change her name or her application would be rejected. When Tanvi refused to do the same, Mishra started shouting at her in front of everyone. When Tanvi broke down, Mishra asked her to go and meet the assistant passport officer (APO).”
Anas, a native of Aminabad area, married Tanvi in 2007. The couple has a six-year-old daughter and work for a private firm in Noida.
He further added: “Mishra then called me and started humiliating me. He asked me to convert to Hinduism else my marriage won’t be accepted. Mishra told me that I would have to marry as per Hindu rituals and take ‘pheras’ and send my file to the APO as well. We met the APO and complained to him. He told us Mishra often misbehaved with people like this and asked us to come tomorrow, assuring us that he would try to solve the problem.”
Mishra, however, defended himself saying he merely asked Tanvi to write her name as mentioned on her nikahnama. “Asked Tanvi Seth to get the name’Shadia Anas’ endorsed as it was mentioned on her Nikahnama, but she refused. We have to go thorough checks to ensure no person is changing their name to obtain a passport,” he told news agency ANI.