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In Conversation With Peter Allen - Immigration Attorney

Ranjani Saigal

(This article is sponsored by Tanna Insurance)

As Sounds of India changes its form, in addition to the voices of Harish and Binita Dang, one also remembers Max and Peter Allen, immigration attorneys who used to appear on their show and answer immigration questions.   

For those of us who have lived in the Boston area for many years, Attorney Peter Allen and his father Max Allen are names that were fairly household names in the Indian community.

As I look back at the early years when I used to listen to Sounds of India, I remember it was a time that immigration questions were of great interest to me. At that time I would often listen to Peter Allen and his father Max Allen answer questions. 

When I met Peter Allen rather by chance at the Shivalaya temple it gave me a chance to learn about this man who was part of Indian American history in the Boston area. 

Where did he come from and why his interest in immigration particularly with the Indian community? 
“My grandparents came from Hungary and Poland. My grandpa came in the late 30s during the Polish Independence movement. He came to Galveston, Texas”

Why Galveston? “There was a Rabbi in Galevston Texas who had saved victims in a hurricane and had become quite well known. As a Jew, this Rabbi was known and thus several immigrants came to Galveston”
How did Peter Allen get interested in Law as a profession? “I did not start out wanting to be a lawyer. But later went on to do an apprenticeship with lawyer Allen Kay in New York. I studied law at BC”

Why the interest in the Indian community? “My father was well travelled. He was very interested in India and had been appointed India’s honorary Consul General. We knew A.P Venkateshwaran the, foreign secretary. He introduced me to the Indian community. I really liked working with the community and made it an important part of my clientele”

What does he think the impact of his work has been? “As a immigration attorney I truly feel elated when I see talent that I help with immigration shine brightly. There are many doctors at Mass General whose case I worked on. When I hear of their work I feel great pleasure. I am the background worker that makes talent shine”

Is there as case you remember with great joy? “Yes there was the case of Sikh gentleman who was about to be deported just because of a immigration letter not being delivered to address from which he had moved. It took a lot digging but when it got resolved it gave such happiness to the family. That was a special moment for me”

You had a hiatus for some time. Are you back to practice now? “Yes. There were some issues I needed to deal with. But I am back in practice and I am enjoying my work very much.’

To learn more about Peter Allen please check out his website at http://www.pallenimmigration.com/


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