Tribune News Service
New Delhi, October 7
India has decided to allow foreign tourists into the country, beginning with granting tourist visas to those travelling by chartered flights from October 15 and those by regular planes from November 15.
The Union Home Ministry today announced that with this, the restrictions placed on visa and international travel since March 2020 due to the Covid pandemic stand further eased given the present situation.
After having considered various inputs, the ministry has decided to begin granting fresh tourist visas for foreigners coming to India through chartered flights with effect from October 15, a Home Ministry statement said.
Foreign tourists entering India by flights other than chartered aircraft would be able to do so with effect from November 15 on fresh tourist visas.
All due protocols and norms relating to Covid as notified by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare from time to time shall be adhered to by the foreign tourists, carriers bringing them to India and all other stakeholders at landing stations, the statement said.
Due to the Covid pandemic, all visas granted to foreigners were suspended last year.
Various other restrictions were also imposed on international travel by the Central government to arrest the spread of the Covid pandemic.
After having considered the evolving Covid situation, foreigners were later allowed to avail any kind of Indian visa other than tourist visa for entry and stay in India.
However, the Home Ministry had been receiving representations from several state governments as well as stakeholders in the tourism sector to start tourist visas and allow foreign tourists to visit India.
Therefore, the Home Ministry consulted all major stakeholders such as the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of Civil Aviation, Ministry of Tourism and state governments where foreign tourists are expected to arrive and took the decision, the statement said.
Centre’s 3-month alert
- The Health Ministry on Thursday warned people about the threat of Covid resurgence during the coming festival and wedding season
- It advised them to avoid crowded places and celebrate festivals virtually
- “Please watch your October, November, December,” Joint Secretary Lav Agarwal said in view of the forthcoming festivals such as Durga Puja, Diwali, Christmas and Eid
All stakeholders consulted
The Home Ministry took the decision after having consulted all major stakeholders, including the Ministries of Health, External Affairs, Civil Aviation, Tourism and various state governments where foreign tourists are expected to arrive. — Govt official
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