The Indian government agencies have been observing the strictest Covid-19 protocols to ensure utmost safety of the people, citizens and tourists alike. Be it the safety checkpoints at the airports before boarding or de-boarding, or enforcement of the social distancing norms; the rules have been adhered to mitigated and control the pandemic that originated in China. These rules do become stricter for international travelers as it is the state responsibility that no other nation bears the consequence of our mistakes. It is also urged from all the international travelers that they may travel only if they experience no symptoms of the extremely unpredictable virus, and also produce necessary proofs to validate so.
Such practices have ensured a significant plummeting of the curve in India since the past few weeks. In spite of these practices, Chinese Government, in an unexpected development, has denied entry of Indian flights to China. The announcement was made on November 5, 2020.A temporary ban has been put on all the flights travelling from India to China. This includes Indians who hold Visa permits and permanent residence in China. The Chinese have also put a ban on “some” British travelers. Even though Britain is under the second wave of the pandemic, China has enforced only “partial” closure of the borders.
The official statement released by China also says that, “The Chinese Embassy/Consulates in India will not stamp the Health Declaration Forms for the holders of the above-mentioned categories of visa or residence permits.”
Not long ago, during the Chinese National Day holidays, Chinese authorities in an attempt to show recovery of COVID situation in the country, allowed unrestricted travel. Qingdao, a coastal city in Shandong province, not very far from Beijing, suddenly saw explosion of COVID cases, as millions of travelers visited the city during holidays. There were reports in local media which exposed that the city authorities knew about cases reappearing in the city well before the National Day holidays, but remained silent so as to prevent loss of revenue or to create panic among holiday travelers.
Although many countries have implemented complete ban on travelers from across the world, this move by China is completely skewed. Not only does this “temporary suspension” seem vindictive, but it is also reeking of escalating tensions between China and India and further exposes the failure of China to uphold the peaceful relations with India, either in the borders or at diplomacy.
This ban on foreign travelers to China reveals the hypocrisy of the Chinese authorities, as it seeks to restore normalcy of travel operations within China despite re-appearance of cases being reported from various regions of China from Xinjiang in west to Tianjin in east. While CCP authorities have been projecting travel restrictions by foreigners to China as part of effort to control the pandemic, but another sinister objective of this ban is to brand the fresh explosion of cases as ‘imported’.