India, China discuss return of stranded students, resumption of direct flights

India And China Has discussed the return of thousands of Indians students Stranded at home for two years because of Beijing’s COVID-19 restrictions and the resumption of direct flights interrupted by coronavirus EpidemicIndian Embassy here said on Thursday.

On Wednesday, the issue of return of Indian students arose in the talks between Indian Ambassador to China Pradeep Kumar Rawat and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

Wang recalled his meeting with his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar during his visit to New Delhi in March this year and noted that “the Chinese side valued the concerns of the Indian side with regard to the return of Indian students and asked them to consider it”. Hope to see progress soon”, Wang was quoted as saying in a press release by the Indian embassy.

Foreign Minister Wang also referred to discussions on resuming direct flight contact between the two sides.

“Ambassador Rawat informed that relevant agencies in India are aware of the matter and we can see progress in this matter very soon,” the statement said.

China has started allowing “some” foreign students to return to the country in recent months.

On June 20, the first batch of 90 Pakistani students, who were stuck at home for nearly two years due to China’s strict visa restrictions, reached the Chinese city of Xian.

They are part of 250 Pakistani students whom China has agreed to allow to return based on their needs, while thousands of others await Beijing’s nod, according to media reports from Pakistan.

Similarly, some stranded students Gradually, permission is being given to return from other countries including Russia and Sri Lanka.

In April, after repeated representations from India, China agreed to allow the return of “certain” Indian students and asked the Indian embassy here to collect details of those who wanted to return.

According to official reports from China, more than 23,000 Indian students are studying in Chinese colleges, mostly medical courses.

More than 12,000 Indian students have expressed their desire to return and their details have been sent to the Chinese government for processing.

China is yet to come up with a criterion to allow the return of students as Beijing is reluctant to allow their return in large numbers in view of the recent COVID-19 spike in the country.

Last week, China announced plans to provide visas to Indian professionals and their families working in various Chinese cities, who have been home-quarantined for more than two years due to Beijing’s COVID-19 visa restrictions.

The Chinese Embassy in India has revised its COVID-19 visa policy after more than two years to accept visa applications from foreign nationals and their accompanying family members wishing to visit China to resume work in all sectors. updated.

This week, it further updated with the COVID-19 protocols to be followed by visa holders to travel to China. While opening up visa services for Indians, China and India are yet to announce plans to resume flight services between the two countries.

Currently, only diplomats travel between the two countries on expensive third country flight routes.

ET Online


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