An Indian-origin family of a nine-year-old chess prodigy who has been told they must leave the United Kingdom is calling on the government to let them stay. Shreyas Royal, Britain’s “greatest chess prospect in a generation” has ranked number four in the world in his age group. His father’s visa will be expiring next month and the family, who came to the UK six years ago, must return to India.
The Home Office said it assessed every case on its own merits. The Indian born has been living in south London since the age of three. Shreyas represented England internationally as he got trained in Chess in Britain. Currently, he is competing in the British Chess Championships. Singh is calling on Home Secretary SajidJavid to let them stay in the UK as his five-year work visa is due to expire following month. He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We just want to request that you can give chance to my son whose talent developed here in England. “The support and recognition that he’s getting in England, I’m sure he will not get it in India.” Immigration rules would allow Singh’s visa to be extended if he earned £120,000 a year, but he does not.Two MPs have backed Shreyas’ case. In a joint letter to the home secretary, Leeds West MP Rachel Reeves and Greenwich and Woolwich MP Matthew Pennycook said the UK would lose an “exceptional talent” if Shreyas was to leave. “The UK should always encourage the world’s brightest, most talented people to work and make their lives here,” they wrote. “Shreyas is recognized by the English Chess Federation as the country’s greatest chess prospect in a generation.”