Visa restrictions for Pakistani patients hit Indian medical tourism

Published on : Saturday, May 13, 2017

medical-tourismWith Indo-Pak ties becoming cold, it’s the common people who are suffering. India’s imposition of restrictions on medical visas to Pakistanis has not just affected hundreds of patients from across the border but also dealt a huge blow to medical tourism in India.


It’s hard to find out precisely how many people travelled to India from Pakistan for treatment, but before visa restrictions were imposed, more than 600 Pakistani patients used to visit India.


Most of them suffering from liver and heart ailments would go to major hospitals in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and other cities. But in February, there was a sharp drop in the numbers. And in the last two months, not a single Pakistani was granted a medical visa.


India took this decision after a Pakistani court sentenced Indian national and retired naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav to death on the charge of espionage. Islamabad has reacted strongly to this, while Pakistani civil society has appealed to human rights organizations to take it up with India and international bodies.

Officials at Apollo hospital said they used to get 30 Pakistani patients each month till last year, but not a single one has come in the last month.


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