KCR applies for US diplomatic visa, sparks speculation

HYDERABAD (TIP): After his trip to Singapore in August, chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao appears to have set his sights on visiting the United States of America. On December 3, the chief minister, made a quick trip to the office of the US Consulate General in Begumpet in the city to complete the formalities of applying for a diplomatic visa. During his visit, which was described as one that lasted just a few minutes, the chief minister also provided his fingerprints as required for biometrics data for all US visa-seekers, it was learnt.

Confirming that Chandrasekhar Rao’s visit to the consulate was for a diplomatic visa, the official representative of the Telangana government in New Delhi, S Venugopalachary said that it was a routine visit as required for the visa process. He said the diplomatic visa would be valid for 10 years and added that the chief minister had no immediate plans to visit the United States. However, the grapevine was abuzz here in the city after the visit and speculation was rife that the chief minister may be planning a trip to the United States sometime in January.

But that prospect of an immediate visit appears unlikely in the absence of any official information on a proposed trip, especially since the Telangana government will need to present its first full-fledged budget in the state assembly before February 28 for the 2015-16 financial year. Sources in the chief minister’s office also confirmed that Chandrasekhar Rao went to the consulate to apply for a diplomatic visa, though no confirmation could be had on a possible timeline for a proposed trip. “It has been all hush-hush,” an official said. There was also speculation during the afternoon that the chief minister would utilize a visit to the US for a full medical check up.

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