Orders of the Day — Mr. Amarjit Singh

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:56 pm on 23 January 1996.

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Photo of Mr Jeremy Hanley Mr Jeremy Hanley , Richmond and Barnes 11:56, 23 January 1996

If a fresh application is made, I can assure my hon. Friend that the entry clearance officer will look at the evidence as presented to him. The evidence that my hon. Friend listed in his contribution this evening could well help to tip the balance, but I cannot say that. It is for the entry clearance officer to come to a conclusion and for the entry clearance manager subsequently to consider it.

I sometimes have reason to write to hon. Members expressing disappointment that, despite protestations to the contrary beforehand, an applicant granted a visa in the light of an hon. Member's intervention has subsequently applied to remain here permanently. It pains me to have to embarrass hon. Members in such a way, but it illustrates the fact that hon. Members are as capable as anyone else of being deceived. I do not necessarily believe that in the case of my hon. Friend; I believe in his total sincerity.

If the evidence that my hon. Friend mentioned in tonight's debate is given in writing, perhaps we can look at it again. It is for the ECO to look at that; it would be wrong for me, merely because of pressure from my hon. Friend, to make a decision and to make a statement in the House. It would mean that justice was subject to pressure—perhaps even bullying, although my hon. Friend could never be called a bully, because he makes his points so courteously.