Badar Azim, who attained celebrity status as the Queen’s footman entrusted with a key role in announcing the birth of the newest royal baby, could lose his coveted job if his visa, which expires in October, is not extended.
Mr. Azim (25), who grew up in a Kolkata slum, was watched by millions of television viewers around the world as he helped the Queen’s Press Secretary Ailsa Anderson put up the ceremonial notice of the birth of the Duchess of Cambridge Kate William’s baby on an easel in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace.
He has been working in the royal household since last year but now reportedly faces an uncertain future as he waits to “find out if he can stay in his job”, The Daily Mirror reported on Tuesday.
Buckingham Palace did not comment, and the Home Office said, “Each application is looked at and judged on its own merits.”
Mr. Azim got the job as a junior footman in the Palace after graduating from Napier University, Edinburgh, with financial help from St Mary’s Orphanage and Day School, run by an Irish charity in Kolkata. His father Mohammed Rahim, a welder, and his mother Mumtaz Begum still live in the same slum where Mr. Azim spent his childhood.
They were delighted at his sudden fame. His brother Mazhar described it as a “fairy-tale moment” recalling Mr. Azim’s difficult childhood.
“We were an economically challenged family. Our parents let us boys sleep on the bed and they slept on the floor. But my father wanted us to go to a good school so that we could learn. He even borrowed money so that we could go forward,” he said.