Stapled visas not acceptable, India tells China

Thursday, January 13, 2011

NEW DELHI - Strongly reacting to China issuing stapled visas to Indian citizens from Jammu and Kashmir and Arunachal Pradesh, New Delhi said Thursday it will not agree to such actions and had conveyed its protest to Beijing.

Stapled Chinese visas are unacceptable to India. It has been conveyed to China. We will not accept it, Defence Minister A. K. Antony told reporters here.

On Tuesday, Indian weightlifter Sibi Yuktar and his coach Abraham Kaya from Arunachal Pradesh were stopped from leaving Delhi after immigration officials noticed that their Chinese visas were issued on a separate sheet of paper stapled to their passports.

In the recent years, China had resorted to similar actions while issuing visas to residents of Jammu and Kashmir, implicitly questioning India’s position that the Himalayan state was its inalienable part.

In the middle of 2010, China had refused visa to an Indian Army general commanding a formation based in Udhampur, resulting in India snapping bilateral military exchanges with its neighbour.

India had, during the visit of Chinese premier Wen Jiabao to New Delhi last month, raised the issue of stapled visas and asked Beijing to be sensitive to its concerns in this regard just as it respected China’s position on Tibet and Taiwan.

On China’s military modernisation, its recent testing of the J-20 stealth fighter jet and building infrastructure along the borders with India, Antony said: We are also modernising our armed forces after careful assessment of emerging threats. Whatever is needed by the armed forces to protect our security we are providing it.”

“On the infrastructure front, we are moving ahead. Compared to the past, our security arrangement in the northern and eastern sectors are improving fast and our armed forces are fairly prepared now.

On the reported transgressions by Chinese troops into Indian territory, the defence minister said it happened mainly due to the differing perceptions of the 4,057-km-long Line of Actual Control by either sides.

–Indo Asian News Service

Filed under: Diplomacy

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