India suspends tourist visas to Chinese nationals

India suspends tourist visas to Chinese nationals

India has suspended tourist visas issued to Chinese nationals, global airlines body IATA told its member carriers on April 20.

India has raised the plight of around 22,000 Indian students enrolled in Chinese universities that are unable to go back for physical classes, because of the plight of about 22,000 Indian students who are enrolled in Chinese universities. The neighbouring country has refused to let them enter.

These students had to leave their studies in China and come to India when the Covid-19 epidemic began in the beginning of 2020.

In a circular issued on April 20 about India, the International Air Transport Association IATA said that tourist visas issued to nationals of the China People's Republic are no longer valid. Passengers with a visa or an e-visa issued by India, passengers with a persons of Indian origin PIO card or booklet, passengers with a persons of Indian origin and passengers with a diplomatic passport are allowed to enter India.

Tourist visas with a validity of 10 years are no longer valid, according to the IATA.

The IATA is a global airlines body with around 290 members that comprise more than 80 per cent of global air traffic.

India has urged Beijing to take a congenial stance in the matter as the continuation of strict restrictions is putting the academic careers of thousands of Indian students in jeopardy, MEA spokeswoman Arindam Bagchi said on March 17.

Bagchi said a Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman stated on February 8 that China was looking into the matter in a coordinated manner and that arrangements for allowing foreign students to return to China were being examined.

But let me clarify that the Chinese side hasn't given any categorical response to the return of Indian students. We will continue to urge the Chinese side to take a congenial stance in the interest of our students and that they facilitate an early return to China so that our students can pursue their studies, Bagchi said.