Beijing: Over 300 Indians, who have managed to take Chinese COVID-19 vaccines to comply with China’s stipulation for travellers from India to be inoculated with its jabs, have urged Beijing to lift travel restrictions and permit them to return to join their jobs and businesses.
On March 15, China made it mandatory for travellers coming from India and 19 other countries to get Chinese COVID-19 vaccines.
‘For the purpose of resuming people-to-people exchanges in an orderly manner, starting from 15 March, 2021, the Chinese Embassies and Consulates in India will provide the persons having taken Chinese-made COVID-19 vaccine and holding the Certificates of Vaccination,’ said a notice posted on the Chinese Embassy in New Delhi.
The announcement put hundreds of Indians, who are working and doing business in China but stuck in India due to travel restrictions imposed following a prolonged spell of COVID-19 virus cases in India, in a dilemma as Chinese vaccines were not available in the country.
But desperate to return to join their jobs and families in China, over 300 Indians travelled to neighbouring countries like Nepal and Maldives besides Dubai and stayed there for over a month to get the two Chinese vaccine jabs incurring huge expenditure.
However, their desperate efforts were in vain as the Chinese Embassy has not started issuing visas for their return.
Following this, over 200 Indians who have been vaccinated with Chinese jabs jointly sent written representation to Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong early this month. They have also written to the Indian Embassy in Beijing, seeking its help to facilitate their early return.
‘Respected H.E Sun Sir, now that we have been successfully vaccinated by the Chinese vaccine, kindly guide us with a way forward. We request you to start visa issuance to Indian nationals, which has been stopped since early November last year,” the Indian community in China wrote to the Chinese Ambassador in a letter which was seen by PTI here.