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Published on : Saturday, May 16, 2015
In his recent trip to China, the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended electronic visas to Chinese nationals. The audience at the Tsinghua University cheered the announcement as the Indian PM reciprocated the repeated requests from Chinese government to cut down on the visa regulations for Chinese businessmen and tourists.
The e-visa facility would enable Chinese applicants to apply for visas online a few days before they travel. Shortly before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement on Friday of the extension of e-visa facility for Chinese nationals, Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar had said that “no decision” had been taken on the issue yet, leading to speculation that Mr. Modi had overruled objections within the security establishment to announce the move.
The e-visa announcement will boost an MoU on tourism cooperation, as 2015 and 2016 have been designated ‘Visit India’ and ‘Visit China’ years respectively, given that Chinese tourists to India now number less than two lakh a year.