Kuala Lumpur: With China remaining adamant on issuing stapled visas to people from Jammu and Kashmir, India Tuesday night asked it to have uniform policy on issuing the travel documents "regardless of ethnicity or place of domicile" of the applicant.
"Our position is very well articulated and it has been
conveyed in unambiguous terms to the Chinese friends," sources
said here about the issue which is expected to come up for
discussion when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh meets Premier
Wen Jiabao in Hanoi on Friday.
"The State of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of
India. We expect issuance of visas (by China) to be uniform
regardless of ethnicity or place of domicile of the
applicant," they said.
The reaction came hours after Chinese Foreign Ministry
said that its policy on stapled visas for Jammu and Kashmir
residents remains unchanged.
The practice of issuing stapled visas, which amounts
to questioning Jammu and Kashmir`s accession with India, was
started by China about two years ago.
While India has been asking China to desist from
issuing stapled visas and stopping travellers with such visas,
the practice continues.
The issue snowballed into a major controversy when
China gave a stapled visa to Northern Army Commander Lt Gen B
S Jaswal in July. India reacted angrily and suspended
high-level defence exchanges, as part of which Lt Gen Jaswal
was travelling to Beijing.