Yoga guru Swami Ramdevji 'detained at Heathrow Airport'
Spiritual leader was expected to lead 1,500-strong class in Glasgow on Monday night
Saturday 21 September 2013
A spiritual leader who was due to lead a 1,500-strong yoga class has been stopped from entering the country, his supporters said.
Swami Ramdevji, 47, was expected to lead the class in Glasgow on Monday night.
But his supporters said he was stopped at Heathrow Airport last night and detained for eight hours.
Ramdevji, who is also known as Baba Ramdev and reportedly has an 85 million strong worldwide following, was given a 24-hour visa and instructed to return to Terminal Five this afternoon, when his supporters fear he will be thrown out of the country.
The organisers of his visit said they have contacted Hindu temples throughout the UK asking for supporters to protest at the airport against the move.
A trust run by Ramdevji, who has his own television channel in India, bought the island of Little Cumbrae just off the coast of Largs in south west Scotland and established it as a yogacentre two years ago.
A Home Office spokeswoman said: "We would not comment on individual cases."
Media reports in India said Ramdevji was detained because he arrived at Heathrow on a visitor's visa instead of a business visa.
His spokesman SK Tejarawala was reported as saying: "It was not clear why the yoga guru was detained for over six hours at Heathrow. He was not carrying anything with him except a small bag of personal effects.
"It is for the British authorities to explain why he was detained."
Scores of supporters attended Terminal 5 this afternoon as the guru was expected to arrive.
They said he was given no explanation for his detention yesterday and claimed he could have been targeted by the Indian authorities for speaking out about corruption back home.
Omparkash Yadav, a group organiser who the guru stays with sometimes, said: "They didn't ask him any questions at all for six hours, then they looked at some his stuff, some papers he had written notes on.
"They kept those and his passport.
"It is not an issue with his visa, that was given by the British High Commission within four days.
"He has been here six or seven times before.
"The first time in 2006 he was a guest of the Queen at Buckingham Palace and the second time he was a guest of Tony Blair at the House of Commons.
"There has never been a problem before.
"He talks about corruption.
"The people are suffering.
"But the people are with him.
"That's the concern with government.
"They will try their best to bring him down."
Keith Vaz, Leicester East MP and chairman of the Home Affairs select committee, arrived at the airport holding hands with the guru who was mobbed by more than 150 supporters.
In the melee the Baba, dressed in sandals and an orange robe, nearly lost his clothing.
He addressed the throng in Hindi before he and Mr Vaz met the chief immigration official.
Mr Vaz said: "What has happened is not acceptable.
"No reason was given for him being held but we will find out what happened."
MH17 crash: Investigators discover more human remains and 'huge section of plane'
Susan Sarandon on David Bowie romance: 'He's worth idolising'
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Exclusive: Cameron’s Big Society in tatters as charity watchdog launches investigation into claims of Government funding misuse
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
- 1 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 2 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 3 Exclusive: Cameron’s Big Society in tatters as charity watchdog launches investigation into claims of Government funding misuse
- 4 Satellite full of sexually experimental geckos adrift in space, Russia loses control of mission