China opens, then shuts, door for Indians wanting to return

(This story originally appeared in on Mar 17, 2021).

In what left numerous flummoxed here, the Chinese embassy announced, obviously for the purpose of resuming people-to-people exchanges in an organized manner, that it will reboot typical visa services for people who have been administered a Chinese Covid-19 vaccine. Although China has actually made comparable announcements in 19 other nations, India is not amongst the nations where any Chinese vaccine is available.There is likewise no proposition to make any Chinese vaccine available to Indian nationals in the near future. The choice effectively makes it compulsory for those aiming to return to China for work and other activities to be inoculated with a Chinese vaccine.” Individuals and their family members (who have Chinese vaccination certificates) going to China to continue their employment contracts, work resumption and other relevant activities are permitted to send their visa applications through Chinese visa application service centre to Chinese embassy or consulates in India following the very same method as prior to the epidemic happened,” the embassy said in a notice The announcement will be of little usage for numerous Indian students who are stuck in India awaiting Beijing to allow their return as there are no Chinese vaccines available in India. Chinese authorities in Beijing validated the “unilateral” choice stating they were trying to “facilitate international travel”. The Chinese embassy didn’t clarify how Indians can access Chinese-made vaccines in India. Global Times reported that such notices were put up by Chinese embassies in 20 countries.Asked about the reasoning behind the announcement, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian told a media rundown on Tuesday that numerous countries had actually floated the concept of connecting vaccination status with opening worldwide travel.” Our proposal to facilitate the travel of those who have actually been inoculated with Chinese vaccines is made after completely considering the safety and efficacy of Chinese vaccines,” he stated.” Our company believe this is a significant expedition of facilitating worldwide travel once mass vaccination has been attained. It is not linked to the acknowledgment of Chinese vaccines. This is a plan made by the Chinese side unilaterally. It is a different thing from vaccine acknowledgment,” he added.Over 23,000 Indian trainees, most of them medical trainees, besides hundreds of professionals working in China are stuck in India because in 2015 due to coronavirus travel restrictions. Despite repeated representations from the Indian embassy and appeals by the trainees, China is yet to respond favorably, a firm report from Beijing said.

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