(CN) – The 8th Circuit denied political asylum to an Indian couple, ruling that “one 10-minute beating, a brief detention, isolated threats from a gangster and occasional police harassment do not establish past persecution.”
Pratap Sakhahari Bhosale and Asha Bhosale applied for asylum in 1993, citing Pratap’s membership in a political group that was briefly banned in India in 1992.
After no action was taken by immigration authorities, the couple renewed their application in 2004, this time adding allegations that Indian police arrested Pratap at a 1990 rally, beat him for 10 minutes and detained him for several hours. He claimed the incident led to regular police harassment and threats from an Indian gangster.
The appeals court in St. Louis found the couple’s testimony “lacking in credibility,” but said that even if their accounts were taken as fact, the couple failed to establish a well-founded fear of persecution.