April 15 , 2017


Pakistan and India ‘halt’ visas

ISLAMABAD: Both Pakistan and India have ‘almost halted’ the issuance of pending visas for each other’s citizens following the death penalty to Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav by the Field general Court Martial. New Delhi is planning to slow down the issuance of visas to Pakistani applicants in retaliation for Jadhav’s death sentence, a report published by the Indian Express said Friday. The report citing sources within the Secretariat Building in New Delhi said that initially ‘high visibility’ targets, such as actors, artists, and singers, will be subjected to the tactic in an effort to gauge the impact of the move, eventually leading up to a possible blanket ban on all Pakistani visitors seeking an Indian visa. Although no specific instructions have been handed to the Indian High Commission in Islamabad, a ‘go-slow mode’ has been activated, the report suggested. However, sources told the Indian Express that an all-encompassing ban on visas would be difficult to maintain as there are a variety of categories requiring humanitarian intervention, including patients and students. Official sources said that two sides had recently agreed to clear the visa backlog after months of artillery exchanges at the Line of Control (LoC) and the Working Boundary. The step was expected to help thaw the frosty relations between the two nations to some extent. “I cannot tell you the exact numbers. But yes, the visas could have been processed in 10 to 15 days. And around 10 Indian diplomats could have joined the (Indian) High Commission in Islamabad. However, the situation is altogether different now after the military court decision,” said an official requesting anonymity.


Courtesy www.dailytimes.com.pk

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