Henceforth, Indian nationals wanting to travel to Hong Kong would require a prior consent from the Immigration Department beginning from 2017 before they visit the autonomous territory within the People’s Republic of China.
South China Morning Post quotes Mohan Chugani, former president of Indian Association of Hong Kong, as terming the new moves as a right step. According to him, it was a way to resolve the economic immigrants’ problem and also to revive the reputation of Indian citizens.
Chugani added that although it was not the best solution, it is a good move for now. He said that Hong Kong was not yet prepared enough to handle a lot of refugees who exploited the system.
He was of the view that Indians would be attacked by people and the media if their numbers keep surging.
Chugani said that the government of Hong Kong welcomes visitors from all over and it has the right to come up with its own immigration policy.
Currently, there is a backlog of 10, 675 refugee applications in Hong Kong, of which 19.7 percent claimants are Indian nationals. Close to half of them entered the autonomous territory illegally and the other half comprised overstayers. These steps were said to have been made public on 7 November after they were mooted by Eric Chan Kwok-ki, former immigration director, in February.
Chugani said that many Indian nationals were being deported as of now if local immigration officers found their motives to visit Hong Kong suspicious.
He, however, added that genuine businessmen and visitors need not panic.
The department did not specify when these steps would be initiated but only hinted that they would be in place by early next year.
If you are planning to travel to Hong Kong, approach Y-Axis to get the best possible professional counselling to file for a visa from one of its 19 offices located in India.