The Hindu Business Line
NOSTALGIA Uber CEO’s ‘scary’ moment of landing in India without a visa
Uber co-founder and Chief Executive Travis Kalanick had to encounter a “scary situation” on his arrival in India, as he found himself “without a visa” and it was only a high-level intervention that saved him from being deported.
Kalanick had to participate in the January 16 Start-up India event here. He reached here by an early morning flight from Beijing, only to discover that he did not have a proper visa.
On a whistle-stop tour here, Kalanick narrated his “scary” moment in a public interview hosted by NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant.
“I had the dates on the visa. On the Indian visa, they go the opposite direction. If they were in the US, so November 12 would be 11/12 in the US and 12/11 here (in India). There was a misunderstanding, and I flew from Beijing into Delhi without a visa and it was a scary situation,” he said, adding that it was Kant who had helped him. “And thank you Amitabh for letting me actually enter the country.”
Kant, who was previously DIPP Secretary, said he was woken up at about 2:30 in the morning. “And I had to wake up the Home Secretary and the Director IB to get him in.”
“He (Kalanick) was put back on the plane and was being shunted back to China. So, we had to get him on because he was here for Start Up India (event),” he said.
Kalanick, who began India tour on December 14 and wound it up with a meeting with President Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday, jokingly asked Kant how many people had he been able to get in using his influence. “You are the only one,” Kant replied.