On Friday (July 9), India based New Zealand origin vlogger Karl Rock alleged that the Indian government had blacklisted him. Karl Rock is a traveller who had shifted to India about two years ago to explore the country and married an Indian woman.
In a video, Karl Rock claimed that after he went to stay in Dubai and Pakistan for some time, where he found that his Indian visa was cancelled. He had said as he returned to Dubai to get the visa renewed, he was told that the Indian government had blacklisted him.
Initially, it was speculated that the controversial New Zealand-based Youtuber Karl Rock was blacklisted for his support to anti-India causes, like his support for anti-CAA protests in 2019, however, later sources from the Union Home Ministry had revealed that the New Zealand national was barred from entering India for the next year for violating the terms of his visa. Karl Rock was discovered doing business on a tourist visa while also breaking other visa rules.
Now, however, it is being revealed that Karl Rock violated Visa norms on at least 3 occasions while he was in India on a tourist visa.
Karl Rock’s visa cancelled for violating terms of his visa thrice: Govt
Sources within the government have revealed to OpIndia that Rock had violated the terms of his visa three times. According to sources, he was first granted a tourist visa in 2016 for a period of two years. However, Karl Rock violated the visa guidelines by publishing a book titled “Indian Survival Guided”, which is not allowed under a tourist visa.
Two years later, according to our sources, the Government of India had granted him another tourist visa for five years from 2018-2023. During his visit to India, Karl Rock yet again violated his visit terms by visiting restricted areas that are not allowed for foreigners to visit, especially those on a tourist visa.
In addition, the officials in the Home Ministry have also taken into consideration Karl Rock’s other visa violations, in which he had published a report with Zee News titled “Atulya Bharat”, exposing scammers in Connaught Place, New Delhi. However, according to tourist visa policy, foreigners cannot indulge in journalism and other media activities without requisite permission from the Indian government.
In 2018, the Government of India had again granted him an X-2 Visa and allowed him to stay in the country for another five years till 2024. However, Karl Rock, who had already violated the terms of his visa three times in the past, participated in an Anti-CAA protest and published it on his Youtube channel.
On 19 December 2019, he had posted a ground report video on YouTube, where he and his wife had participated in anti-CAA protests in Delhi. It is clearly a violation of visa norms, as foreign nationals are not allowed to participate in political activities in India.
Following his repeated violations of the terms of the visa granted to him by the Indian government, the Home Ministry took a serious note and has cancelled the visa granted for Youtuber Karl Rock. Therefore, Rock had a tourist visa from 2016 to 2018 and 2018 to 2023. Further, he was granted an X2 visa from 2019 to 2024, but he ended up violating visa norms again. According to sources, each time a visa was granted to him, Karl Rock ended up violating the visa norms and was therefore put on the blacklist.
Karl Rock – a frequent visitor to terrorist-state of Pakistan
In addition, the Visa granted to Karl Rock may have also been cancelled due to his frequent trips to the terrorist state of Pakistan. For several months, Karl Rock has stayed in Pakistan, a country he had claimed to have left abruptly just three years ago because the ISI was watching him, suspecting him of being a spy.
In a video, he had claimed that he was constantly under surveillance during his Pakistan visit in 2018, and due to this, he became so paranoid that he had the end the visit early. On 22 May 2018, he posted a video where he said that he was feeling very paranoid because Pakistan’s Intelligence Agency was watching him after crossing the border on foot.
He said that immediately after he crossed the Wagah border, the Pakistani officials asked where he was going, and when he said that he was going to Islamabad, Lahore and Peshawar, the officials became suspicious because Peshawar is a hub of terror activities, and it is also close to the Afghan border.
He said that it is not nice to be spied on, it is not nice to be followed around, it is not nice to be watched, and it does not make one feel safe. Due to this situation, he wanted to leave the country as soon as possible as he didn’t want to be under surveillance. He crossed back to India through the Wagah border soon after that, saying that it was a shame that he had to end the visit early.
Despite this experience, he went back to Pakistan in 2020 and spent months there, visiting various places in the country. In recent weeks, he has posted several videos on his YouTube channel chronicling his visit to various places in Pakistan.
He had even visited Pakistan occupied Kashmir. In January and February this year, he had posted several videos showing his visit to the ‘other side of Kashmir’. While he is a traveller and he has the right to pursue his interest, his visit to PoK raises eyebrows because earlier, even his visit to cities in Pakistan was kept under watch.
It is not sure whether he was under ISI surveillance or not. However, it is interesting that while Pakistani intelligence was worried about his visit to Peshawar, he was freely roaming around in PoK, another sensitive region.