India Halts Visas for Canadians Applying from Overseas, Sparks International Concern

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MEA Clarifies Visa Service Suspension in Canada, Citing Ongoing Security Threats to Indian Officials in High Commission.

MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi (File Photo)

During a press conference held on Thursday, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson, Arindam Bagchi, stated that Canadian citizens, even if residing in other countries, would not be able to apply for an Indian visa. This decision comes as an addition to the earlier announcement of the suspension of visa services in Canada.

Bagchi explained that the halt in visa services was a result of security threats faced by officials at the Indian High Commission and consulates in Canada, which had disrupted their normal functioning. The situation will be reviewed regularly, he added.

Bagchi also highlighted the need for increased security at the Indian Consulate in Canada, emphasizing the host government’s responsibility in providing security. He further claimed that Canada is providing a safe haven for terrorists and urged the Canadian government to take action against individuals with terrorism charges or extradite them to India for justice.

The visa service suspension follows Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s suggestion of potential involvement of Indian agents in the killing of a Khalistani separatist. A private agency hired for the initial scrutiny of Canadian visa applications posted a note on its website confirming the suspension of Indian visa services until further notice.

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Toshika Chauhan

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