Kochi, Feb 14: With the issue of the Israeli couple staying in Kerala who were asked to leave the country by the district administration last Tuesday, has got a breather after their deportation notice was stayed by the Kerala High Court today.
The Israeli couple identified as Shneor Zalman Bernstein and Yaffa Shendi Keing from Bloy Street in Jerusalem had come to Kochi on Mar 3, 2010. They had rented out a house in the predominantly Jewish, Rose Street in Fort Kochi. The order for their deportation was issued by the the Kochi collector within 15 days.
The couple has in turn said the administration acted arbitrarily that led to Justice S Siri Jagan who heard the matter in High Court stayed the deportation order. It also ordered the District Collector to hear the grievances of the couple and pass just orders on the same by Wednesday.
The collector had made its judgement based on a report submitted by deputy commissioner of police (administration and crimes) on January 30 this year, citing violation of tourist visa norms. As per the report, the couple was understood to have violated visa norms and carried out activities related to their religious life and under their religious organization 'Chabad' in a synagogue at Mattanchery in Kochi. The tourist visa on which they were in the country bars them from carrying out religious and spiritual activities.
The police stated that the man claimed to be a certified rabbi in the synagogue was carrying out suspicious meetings in midnight that alerted the police. The state government highlighted the fact that as per central govt guidelines foreigners arriving on tourist visas are barred from undertaking any employment, business, or other profession.