As We Heard

Wrong Name?

2 August 2019

Coming back to India for a holiday, a (now retired) senior Indian diplomat was surprised to find himself being held up by immigration at New Delhi airport. The reason, he discovered after roughly half an hour’s questioning, was his name or more precisely, the unusual spelling of his name. As the immigration officer explained to him politely, the fact that his name ‘Asoke’ did not have the usual h, and also had the extra e, suggested that his name was spelled wrongly on the passport. Thus, they had to conduct a thorough check before they could let him in. The harried diplomat however soon found a solution to this problem. As luck would have it, a front-page story in a leading newspaper lying on the immigration officer’s table carried the quote of a politician who coincidentally also had his name spelled the same way. Brandishing this fact triumphantly before the officer, the diplomat was finally let in.

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