UAE: Two Indian authors granted 10-year Golden Visas

Saman Haziq /Dubai Filed on July 16, 2021

Deeba Salim Irfan. Supplied photo

Rajeev Gupta. Supplied photo

The authors are grateful to the UAE for recognising and nurturing talent.

Two Indian authors based in the UAE have become the latest recipients of the UAE's 10-year Golden Visa

Deeba Salim Irfan, who calls Dubai her home, has been living here for the last 22 years. She has already penned three books and is working on her fourth one. She's one of the very few female authors from India to have received the Golden Visa. Deeba was an advertising professional before she turned into a full-time author.

On receiving the coveted visa under the ‘class of creator from the people of culture and art’, she said: “I am extremely delighted to receive the long-term visa for myself and my family and be recognised as a writer by the government of UAE. I am thankful to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, for launching the first long-term cultural visa in the world and recognising and nurturing talent. I pledge 36 hours a year for the service of aspiring writers in this country.”

Deeba’s poetry coffee table book, Charcoal Blush was the finalist at the 2017 Book Excellence Awards in Canada. It was launched at AMULiterary Festival in India in 2016 by Padma Shri Keki Daruwala, a well-known poet of India.

Charcoal Blush received a lot of praise from Academy Award-winning and Emmy Award-winning directors. Her debut novel, Urma, published in India was translated into Urdu and nominated for an award. Currently, it is being translated into more languages outside India. Her latest novel is 355 Days (Genre – Crime-Legal Fiction).

Deeba is the founder of, a portal for aspiring writers, and is the curator of the unique writers retreats that were held in Slovenia and the Kangra Valley in the Himalayas with the industry’s best editors as her guests for participants.

She was on the jury of iWrite’19 a competition for aspiring writers at Jaipur BookMark, Jaipur Literature Festival and is a recipient of the ‘Outstanding Aligarian Award’ and also an award presented by Bollywood scriptwriter and lyricist - Javed Akhtar in 2017.

In 2019, she got the ‘Global Star of the Year’ award at the AMU Women of Influence Conclave, held at Atlantis, Dubai. She lives in Dubai with her husband, Irfan and her three kids – Fadi, Manaal and Fatin.

The other UAE-based Indian author to have received the Golden Visa is Rajeev Gupta, the founder and CEO of Lime Source Consultancy, Dubai and Canada.

Gupta started his career with less than Dh300 savings at a very young age. Since then, he has travelled across the globe and now has 30 years of international experience behind him. He has also previously won the Prestigious Global CEO Excellence Award and is a popular figure in the industry. His book 50 Secrets of Success was published in UAE. It did well on the Global Platform across 25 countries and is recommended by Ali Khalil Al Sayegh, author and Group CEO, The office of Shaikh Rashid Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum.

Saman Haziq

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