CRÉTEIL The planned deportation from France of a Bangladeshi immigrant has been suspended after his son was crowned French junior national chess championship, Libération reports.
Nura Alam, a member of the political opposition in Bangladesh, taught his son Fahim how to play chess in their native country, where the boy evenutally became a top competitive player. But the success of the son of an opponent was not appreciated; and fter receiving death threats, Alam decided to leave the country with his family, which moved to India, then Hungary, and finally sought refuge in France in 2008.
Alam applied for political asylum -- and registered his son both at school and the local chess club. The father's asylum application was rejected in 2010, and he was ordered to leave France, though Fahim was protected as a school-attending minor.
Libération reports that Alam lived for two years in fear of being deported. But things began to change after Fahim became the France Under-12 national chess champion.
Pressure from the school parents and reports in the local press followed, and Prime Minister François Fillon even said that the case would be closely reexamined. On Friday, Alam was received by the local Prefecture and handed a three-month work permit.
As for Fahim, he told Libération that he was relieved. He will also be able to travel for international chess competitions, representing France.
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