India turned back British parliamentarian Lord Alexander Carlile from the Delhi airport soon after the top British lawyer’s flight landed from London on Wednesday. Lord Carlile, who is a legal consultant to jailed former Bangladesh Prime Minister Khaleda Zia, was reported to have travelled to New Delhi to address a media briefing to highlight what the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party or BNP, calls are “baseless allegations” against her.
New Delhi explained the decision to refuse entry to Lord Carlile to an inappropriate visa.
“His intended activity in India was incompatible with the purpose of his visit as mentioned in his visa application,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said.
“It was therefore decided to deny him entry into India upon arrival,” he said.
The decision is expected to go down well with the Sheikh Hasina government that hadn’t permitted the lawyer into the country.
Lord Carlile had told Dhaka Tribune that since he was not been permitted to come to Dhaka, he wanted to hold a press conference in India “to explain the complexities in Khaleda Zia’s case to the international media community”.
A high profile lawyer who held several judicial roles, Lord Carlile was appointed to the BNP leader’s legal team in March this year.
Ex-Prime Minister Khaleda Zia, has nearly three dozen criminal cases filed against her that the BNP insists, are part of a plot to keep her and her family out of politics.
She was convicted in the first case in February this year. She was sentenced to five years for stealing $ 253,000 in foreign donations received by an orphanage trust set up when she was last prime minister, from 2001 to 2006.
The verdict could prevent the 72-year-old opposition leader from running in the general elections this year as the country’s constitution prohibits a convicted person sentenced to over two years from participating.