On behalf of my country I want to apologize to Shahrukh for the inappropriate behavior of these immigration officers for making his life miserable for a second time in a row.
I understand if he never wants to come back here and that’s the worst possible outcome for his fans in the US and for Bollywood. It’s leaving a shameful mark and will make other stars weary.
I commend him for honoring his engagement at Yale University after this un-welcome ceremony. Very different from how VIPs are treated in India, btw…
I understand the importance of national security but I don’t understand what happened there at Immigration! Shahrukh has been in and out of this country for YEARS! how can they still detain him, scrutinize his papers? I am sure Srk was able to provide the paperwork proving his speaking engagement at Yale. Couldn’t they make a simple phone call? especially after this fiasco a few years back. Certainly the US immigration computers will spit out the history with this global traveler.
Having said that, immigration officers here and abroad are a pain in the neck on average. They are taught to assume the worst, I guess. I can still understand that one needs to be cautious as a rule of thumb, but for heavens sake, MAKE THE TRAVELER feel welcome! Be polite, offer them comfort while you check out with the authorities with whom you are dealing with.
I had similarily bad experiences here in America before I got my citizenship. Israel, Italy and India’s officers aren’t much nicer either, truth be told, whenever they suspect anything fishy. So maybe 5% of travelers have something to hide, but 95% of travelers are clean, if not more! Immigration and custom officers treat everyone like suspects, criminals, especially foreigners. During their training as immigration officers they ALL should be taught manners, regardless with whom they are dealing with…they are so rude in general! You can do this job respectfully and honorably just as effectively.
If you are alerted to a VIP coming into the country, which I am sure Srk’s entourage did, be cordial. Immigration is the visit card of a country. A traveler is excited to be visiting a place other than home, excited to be there. If you are treated disrespectfully in the first five minutes you don’t want to conduct any business there anymore. I know a few who despise the country based on their first encounter with Immigration services! And this needs to change! I am not saying rice and flowers… but just manners, please. Show some respect.
Yale video and transcript below.