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Tuesday, 06 October, 2020, 15 : 30 PM [IST]

MHA allows Tibetans with valid visas to return

The Union Home Ministry has allowed Tibetan migrants in foreign countries to return to India through any of the 107 immigration check posts.

The travel restriction by Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), prohibiting international travel to and from 107 immigration check posts was issued on March 23, a day before the first phase of the 21-day-countrywide lockdown was imposed in wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The visa restrictions have been gradually relaxed and on August 18, the Ministry allowed foreign journalists and their dependants to enter India.

On August 7, the Ministry had allowed foreign nationals from the U.S., U.K, Germany and France to travel to India on “business, medical and employment” visas under the air bubble scheme.

As per the latest order by Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), “It has been decided to permit Tibetan migrants who have their residence in India and holding certificate of Identity issued by the Ministry of External Affairs and Return Visa to enter India.”

The MHA order said the return is subject to the condition that such Tibetan migrants should have been registered with the Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO).

“Their Return Visa shall stand restored with immediate effect to facilitate their entry into India. However, if the validity of such visas has expired, they may obtain a fresh Return Visa from the Indian Missions/Posts concerned,” the order said.

It said the existing restrictions on incoming passenger traffic into Indian through the Immigration Check Posts will not apply in respect of these foreign nationals. “However, in respect of quarantine and all other health/COVID-19 related matters, guidelines of the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare shall be adhered to,” the order said.

Commercial flights are still suspended except those operating with special permission from the government under the Vande Bharat or air bubble scheme with select countries.

Some visa restrictions for foreigners were eased on June 1 and foreign businessmen coming to India on a chartered flight, healthcare professionals and engineering, managerial, design or other specialists were allowed to enter after seeking fresh visas. Earlier in May, the MHA had relaxed visa and travel restrictions to allow a limited category of Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) cardholders, stranded abroad, to come to India. (Source: The Hindu)


 
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