Wednesday, 15 October 2014

UK Visa Facts!

I applied for UK Visa and there were so many things which I could find on net very easily and there were few other things which I didn't find any mention off even after rigorous searching. 
                                              
In this era of 'Right to Information' I think we need to know the lesser known facts too, of any process. So here I am, with some known and some lesser known facts.

UK Visa applying location :: Pune (India)
UK Visa Processing office:: Mumbai (India)

Known Facts::

Documents

As I applied for the tourist visa, here are the list of documents which were required: 

1)     Original passport (06 Months valid from the date of travel) + previous passport         if any.
2)     2 Colour photograph with white background, matt finish size 35 mm X 45 mm         80% face Size   
3)     Covering letter mentioning your travel details.
4)     Original Bank statement for last 6 months updated.
5)     Salary slips for last 6 months.
6)     Personal Income Tax copies for last 3 years
7)     Leave Letter from company.
8)     Other financial papers NSC, PPF, Bonds, FD, shares property papers, etc.
9)     Original Leave letter.
10)    Appointment letter from company.
11)     Pension passbook / slips.
12)    School / College ID card copy.
13)    Hotel Bookings

Documents from UK

     1.      Passport & Visa copies.
     2.     Invitation letter.
     3.     1 accommodation proof.

Documents if someone is sponsoring.

    4.      Passport copies or any ID card copy in which name and signature seen.
    5.      Sponsorship letter.
    6.      Company registration copy.
    7.      IT returns for last 03 years
    8.      Bank Statements for last 6 months.
    9.      Salary slips for last 03 months( if employed)
    10.     FD’s, Property papers, Shares, etc


E-Mails:

After you apply for UK Visa, you generally receive three mails from the UK Visa office.

   1. When your application is received in the head office. (In my case, when my                   application reached Mumbai office, I received my first mail.)  

   2. When your application is processed, you will be intimated that the Visa has been            processed and will be ready for dispatch. (There is no mention of whether it is              approved/rejected.)

   3. When your Visa reaches the office where you applied and is ready for dispatch from        there too, you receive the third mail.

Days taken in processing:

If you are applying for first time/ normal time frame, it generally takes 10-15 working days. Or, once you get the second mail, you can expect it any time.

But in every case, the time frame is respected and you receive the passport for sure within these 10-15 working days.

Courier:

You receive your UK Visa from the Blue Dart courier.


Lesser Known Facts::

Document:

Talking about the marriage certificate: If you don't have a marriage certificate, an affidavit will work as good. (My visa was done on an affidavit.)

E-Mail:
In general cases, you get all the three mails which I mentioned above. 

But in some cases, like mine,
Ø  I got the first mail of acknowledgment that my visa has been received at the UK Visa processing centre.
Ø  I got the second mail that it has been processed and is ready for dispatch.
Ø  I didn't receive the third mail. In some cases this mail is not received. (My husband got this mail, I didn't receive it.)

Days:

Like I said before, the time frame is strictly adhered too. You can check the list of holidays from the UK Visa office site. Exclude those holidays and count the number of working days from the day you received your first mail.

Within these 15 working days, you can expect your passport to arrive. (My husband passport reached in 6 working days and mine took 12 working days.)

Courier:

After you receive your second mail, you can actually track your passport location. We looked for this information and finally we sorted out this process. 

1.      Got to this site - http://www.bluedart.com/

2.     Click on the reference number button:


3. You get a acknowledgement sheet from the UK Visa office when you apply. In that   sheet, there is a reference number mentioned. 

     You need to enter that reference number here in this location:

Then enter go.

If your passport is in transit, the entire location details and the expected timing will be mentioned in detail. 

This tracking is very helpful as you know exactly what time you can expect the passport to arrive. In some cases, like mine, I got my second mail on Thursday, no mails further and the passport reached me on Tuesday. (http://swarnpriya.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/visa-fever_1.html - The detail description of my dramatic event of receiving my passport.)

Well, we had a nail-biting time and figured all these tracking process on the day we received my passport. But information is out there, we just need to know how to get it on time. Here you are!

Do leave your valuable comments. Makes me happy :)

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Visa Fever!

Well, just a few days back my husband and I got this - visa fever. 

My husband was to go to United Kingdom for six months. So, our plan was that my daughter and I will tag along with him. All said and fixed, we started the process. 

Collecting all the documents, searching/reading/surfing net vigorously to find out if we missed anything or anything else is required, visiting the visa agent and getting the documents list verified. It was some days.

Usually the visa application process for UK is such that you don't get to know if your visa is approved or rejected till the time your passport is in your hand and you actually check it. But before you get your passport, GENERALLY you get two mails.

What happened with me::

I got a mail on Thursday before noon that my passport has been couriered from Bombay(That's how I like to call Bombay). So, both of us were eagerly waiting for the visa to arrive on Friday(you know, blue dart is fast and Bombay-Pune is not much of distance and in normal cases it takes that much time or less.) I religiously sat at home for the whole day, not stepping my foot out even for a short while. Friday just passed.
We were not expecting the visa to arrive on Saturday and Sunday. So somehow we killed time, kept on checking the increasing fare rates.
So, the Monday arrived. We geared up to receive our passport that day. For sure. Again, I stayed at home, not stepping a foot out, paying full attention to the bell. My craziness had increased so much that even a small knocks, even if it was at the neighbour's door, I checked. Just to be sure.

Nothing. No mails. No courier. And it was 6 'o' clock in the evening. The Monday passed by.

It was time for us to be worried/anxious/sad/disheartened. We assumed that our visa has been rejected and hence it is taking so much time to reach us. Well, we didn't say these things to each other. We tossed and turned on bed. Not talking. May be, slowly preparing ourselves for the worst. To stay away from each other for six months.

Although, I am a overly optimistic person but somehow the new dawn didn't bring the hope. I was just preparing myself to face people and tell them that I am NOT going to UK. Well, my husband went and came back from office in an hour, to wait with me for the courier or may be to just be with us for some time. You know, we might just be away for a long time.

Noon passed. We checked my mail like every second to receive the second mail, which I didn't receive till now. Then we checked the Blue dart site. We found out that it has started from Bombay on Monday evening. So, we analysed that we will receive the passport by Tuesday, that was this day.

In our heart, we became sure that after receiving first mail on Thursday before noon, courier was done on Monday evening. It can't be normal process of visa being approved. Still, we waited.

Ironically, there were two big blue dart trucks entered in our society. We were sure that it will carry out small passport in those big trucks. Well, they just delivered small packets to people and went back. Aaaagraahh!

It was almost 4 pm. We finally decided to have our lunch. We ate quietly. We were midway our lunch, engrossed in Tom & Jerry, the bell finally rang. Before we could answer the door, our eyes met. We knew this was it. My husband hurriedly opened the door.

Finally! The passport was there in our hands! While he signed, I just tore apart the packet and flipped through the page to find out.

OH MY GOD! Oh my god! It was done. I got my visa. I got my daughter's visa. Oh my God. Oh my God. We hugged each other like we won some strange battle with the stars. Well, it was some time.


Posting from Leicestershire !

Sunday, 17 August 2014

The Night!



"Yeah! Finally, the long weekend! So, as per our plan, we are going to Goaaaaa!" Ritu yelled!
She along with her friends packed and went to bed to sleep early and leave early for Goa on 15th August. 

Post mid-night, there was a knock at the door. Ritu woke up with sleepy eyes and answered. She tried to look who it was. She couldn't see anyone. She thought it must be one of her friends doing the usual prank. She opened the door. 

Standing there was a lady in torn and dirty clothes, sad face but the confidence, beauty and elegance on her face couldn't be ignored. Ritu anxiously asked, "Who are you?"

"I am Mother India. Can I come in, Ritu?" the lady spoke.

"Yeah!" Ritu replied. The lady walked in. Ritu held the door and stood there. Facing her back. 
Mother India spoke, "68 years have passed since I became free, but I still can't breathe. I feel so strained, deserted and alone."

Ritu stood in silence and was listening to the traumatic and deep voice.

She continued, "When I was not free, I was still clean. There was some laws which people feared. There was respect and love. There was humanity alive. People cared for me too. But now, law has become a joke. Look around. The roads are so dirty, the air is polluted, there is so much noise all around, trees are being cut! Safety of girls, children, child labour. Corruption at every level and there are so many other problems. Each and every problem, let me repeat, each and every problem is as big as being a captive."

There was silence. After a few minutes, she spoke again, "The only hope for me is you. The youth. Who has plans to enjoy the long weekend. Who is deserting me but has a lot of complains. In every other line, they say..arre India mein yehi hota hai....bahar settle hote hai yaar! 





She turned and faced Ritu. She looked into her eyes and continued, "I need you. Now!"
She walked out of the door and closed it behind. Ritu stood there. For long. 

Someone was shaking her. She opened her eyes. Her friend was telling her to get up and get ready for the Goa trip. She got up. She spoke, "We are not going to Goa."

Her friends were shocked. All of them together asked, "Are you all right? We are soooo going."

She said, "It's Independence day. Let's give this day to India. Let's do something for her. Let's reach out to the needy. Let's clean the city. Or something. For our India!"

One of her friends spoke, "Have you gone mad? We are really getting late. If you want to come then please, else we will start the trip."

She said, "You may. I won't. I want to live in this country forever. I want to stand up for her, today. Sorry, starting from today, till always."

She left the room. Her friends went out of the house thinking that she has become crazy. They sat in the car. 

After an hour Ritu was all set to start her day. Unsure what to do, feeling alone but determined. To her surprise, her friends were there. In the car, waiting for her. One of them spoke, "Mata ji, from where do we need to start? Can you direct us?"

She smiled. With tears in her eyes. She sat in the car happily. 



This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative by BlogAdda.
Image Courtsey: All images are from Google.

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Poky Nose!

Bad habits...let's see! Among the long list which runs in my mind, one thing that is bad particularly about Indians and I just hate it, is - poking their nose in other's matter. Let me be a bit more specific - 

"अरे, बड़ी हो गई आपकी बेटी, कोई लड़का देखा ?" 
"अभी भी घर में बैठी है?"
"इसकी शादी के लिए रिश्ता लेकर आऊ क्या?"

Those nose-poking aunties and the extra-bothered uncles are a pain. Their own life might be in a complete mess, but they do come over to trouble the girl's parents and her life. 

I don't hear such things in other countries but India, OMG. It should be stopped. Please live your life and let others live in peace! 

What say!




And it rained that night!

We held our hands tight. Looked deep into each others eyes. And there was a shrieking whistle which shattered our lovely moment. 

Yes. The train arrived on the platform. With heavy heart, I boarded the train. 

His eyes just said, "Don't go!"

And in nick of the time, it rained that night. Like never before!

He looked up to the sky, soaked in rain in minutes, he looked at me and he finally broke his silence and said, "Even the city cries when you go!"

"Awwww!" I could barely say this and the train started moving. 

With tears in my eye, I was watching my city soaked in rain, passing by. I put on my ear plugs. Just then, FM played - "Duriyaaaa....Duriyaan bhi hai zaruri....zaruri hai ye duriyan!"

Oh yeah and I smiled ;)


This post is a part of WOW, an initiative by BlogAdda

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Black is Beautiful!

A color which can add classiness and at the same time enhances the beauty of the product it is on, is undoubtedly BLACK! Black - my magical color, is indeed beautiful! Black - a color which embraces all colors, good or bad, but keeps its state same. It still remains black, whatever be it! This attribute of black, makes it the best color and unique in itself. Its name says it all:

B: Brilliant 


Nothing can be as brilliant and flawless as a God's creation. Well, I am a big animal person. There are these few animals I have always wanted to own or at least see with my own naked eyes. 

The black Panther - is a unique creature in itself. A loner which swims to relax and adjust itself according to the climatic adversities, it show all the characteristics which I can relate to. I really want to see a black panther with my eyes to believe the beauty of God's creation. 

Completely black German Shepherd: I have been a proud owner of one, a double coated and jet black German shepherd whom we called, Tigs! They come to your family as a dog and makes their space as a family member. They are just brilliant, beautiful and black! 


The black stallion: I saw this movie as a kid and since then I have wished to own this black stallion, run with him on the beach, sit on his back and just swim till I drop down and then I want to fly in water on his back till the shore! I have grown up, but the wish list still has meeting with the black stallion, on the top! 



L: Lustrous



There has been one game that makes me forget just about everything!  Chess! Not that I win every time, but the whole game creates an adrenaline rush! My wish list contains this - Chess Set: Charles Hollander! 

It is a hand-made set with gold, white and black diamond. The black diamond is what which adds it's beauty to the zenith. The entire set is simple lustrous, livid and lasting. 



A: ARDENT

A color - black, is a color which expresses the intense feeling. There are reasons why I believe in it's strength.

Mangalsutra - I always wanted a diamond studded mangalsutra, but wait, whatever be the style, whatever be the size, whatever stones are studded in it, the main part of this mangal-sutra will always remain - the gold beads in-between the black ones. This black-gold beads symbolizes the start of a beautiful relationship.

Kala tika: The kala-tika which saves from the so called buri-nazar ;) Not a very superstitious person, but my mornings start with applying a kala-tika on my little girl. It keeps all the bad/evil wishes away from her. Not only my child, even the beautiful bride applies it on her face to keep herself away from all the bad 'nazars' on her D-day.

Well, till date I have that traditional mangalsutra and not the diamond studded one. My wish list contains one diamond studded mangal-sutra. It also contains more of kala-tika. My daughter is getting cuter by the minute, you see! :)



C: Classy



Whether it is a black beauty running swiftly on the road much to the owner's pride, or a simple black rado in the wrist or a black IPad, this magical color always adds to the classiness of the end product. This color not only enhances the royal look and feel of these cars and gadgets but also makes you yearn for them! Totally!

My heart is set on all of them and yes, yes I want them all!

K: KILLER
                            
Whether it's the men who suit up in black or the ladies who dawn the black, it always, always sets them in fire and creates the magical killer looks!

It's such a color, which actually hides any deformities and fashions a absolute new you! The way you would want to look, the way you would want to feel. My wardrobe is filled with killer black clothes, but it's never enough, you know! My wish list contains more and more and many many more magical blacks :)



   This contest is a part of #WhatTheBlack activity at BlogAdda.com
Image Courtsey: Google

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Zests of my life!

I love living in the moment and enjoying the ride of my roller coaster life as the turn takes me through! There are so many things which I love and they literally keeps me walking even in my sleep. Let me mention a few.


Of course, no guessing is required here. That's the first thing that adds the zest in my life. My daughter. A hyperactive and extremely naughty kid who knows how to test her mom's love. She generally tests it at wee hours in the morning and ask me to make something hot and fresh to eat. She takes a tiny-miny bite from that and goes back to sleep! :-/ 
 Yeah, I love you honey!


The unexpected trips!
Short or long trips, planned or surprise trips, with friends or with family trips keeps my smile intact and keeps me freshly energized. It's never about where I went and it is always about how much fun I had in the entire trip! The road trip, the dhaba food, the freshness of the new place, just helps me to feel alive! :)



My mumma-papa
When my life is clouded with problems and in midst of the thundering I don't see any ray of hope, I always know which number to dial which can bring back the sunshine in my life. Of course, I have grown up and I have a little baby to mother, but their love and pampering still keeps that little girl alive in me. It just helps me to live more and to laugh more! :)

My Friends!
Be it my husband or siblings and their better halves or my school/college/work/home friends, they are the magic creators in my life. They can make me smile when I am sad and can make me cry when I am extremely happy! Oh yes, I don't feel lack of enemies ever. ;)

Gol-Guppa
 This is one of that food, which the more I have, the more I want to have. The spicy, crunchy and yummy pani-puri is the best invention of mankind and I am and will be ever grateful to its inventor! This is that one food can brightens me up in my gloomiest mood. Well, my husband takes full advantage of this fact and this has become his most inexpensive way to woo his lady after every small and big fights! :-P

This post is a part of the #ZestUpYourLife activity in association with TATA Zest andBlogAdda.com