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He’s 9, a Chess Prodigy and Must Leave the U.K., Officials Say

Category: Europe,World

Shreyas was 3 when his father, Jitendra Singh, found work as an IT project manager in Britain for Tata Consultancy Services, on a one-year visa. Mr. Singh moved with his wife and son from Bangalore, India, in 2012, settling in South London.

There, Shreyas learned to play chess, developing exceptional skills and dreaming of becoming the world’s youngest chess champion. In 2016, he won a silver medal at the European Schools Chess Championships in Halkidiki, Greece, according to the English Chess Federation.

On the BBC Radio’s “Today” show on Tuesday, Shreyas chalked up his success to “working hard — I think that’s the only reason.”

Mr. Singh later extended his stay with a five-year visa that was given to people who earn less than 120,000 pounds, about $155,000, a year. The visa expires in September.

Caroline Nokes, the minister of state for immigration, said in a letter sent in response to Mr. Lawson that while Shreyas shows “immense promise,” there was “no route, within the rules, that will allow Mr. Singh and his family to remain in the country.”

Mr. Singh said in a telephone interview that once this visa expires, he cannot apply for another year, and if he gets a new assignment in Britain, he would have to apply from India. So the family must leave the country.

Immigration law in Britain allows for visas to be issued to those with “exceptional talent” — in fields such as science, engineering, digital technology and fashion — or categories of “sport, like archery, cricket, snooker or yoga.


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