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China themselves have not issued visas to us: MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi after India suspends tourist visas of Chinese nationals

India has been raising with China the plight of approximately 22,000 Indian students enrolled in Chinese universities who are unable to go back for physical classes

FPJ Web Desk | Updated on: Thursday, April 28, 2022, 05:39 PM IST

MEA Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi | Photo: ANI
MEA Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi | Photo: ANI
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Days after India announced suspension of tourist visas issued to Chinese nationals, Ministry of External affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said it is not opportune time for resumption of visas citing a rise in COVID cases in the nation.

"We are aware of the COVID situation in Chinese cities like Shanghai, not the opportune time for resumption of issuance of tourist visas for China," Arindam Bagchi said at a press conference.

"China themselves have not issued visas to us, have suspended (visa issuance to India) since 2020...Not the right time to discuss the issuance of tourist visas for China," the MEA spokesperson added.

India has been raising with China the plight of approximately 22,000 Indian students enrolled in Chinese universities who are unable to go back for physical classes. However, the neighbouring country has till date refused to let them enter.

In a circular issued on April 20 regarding India, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said, “Tourist visas issued to nationals of China (People’s Republic) are no longer valid.” It said the following passengers are allowed to enter India: nationals of Bhutan, India, Maldives and Nepal; passengers with a residence permit issued by India; passengers with visa or an e-visa issued by India; passengers with an overseas citizen of India (OCI) card or booklet; passengers with a persons of Indian origin (PIO) card; and passengers with a diplomatic passport.

Meanwhile, the Chinese mainland reported 1,494 new locally transmitted confirmed COVID-19 cases and 47 deaths in the past 24 hours, the National Health Commission said on Thursday.

Of these local cases, 1,292 were reported in Shanghai while the rest of the cases were reported in 16 other provincial-level regions on the mainland including 56 in Jilin, 48 in Beijing, and 46 in Zhejiang, Xinhua reported citing the commission.

The country also reported 9,791 locally transmitted asymptomatic infections of the virus in the past 24 hours, of which 9,330 local asymptomatic carriers were identified in Shanghai.

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Published on: Thursday, April 28, 2022, 05:40 PM IST