India Tightens Visa Rules; US, UK Show Concerns

India has stiffened its visa rules for tourists seeking long term stay, a move that will have a bearing on thousands of foreigners living in the country or planning lengthy visits.

Under previous rules, tourists having five or ten-year visas needed to leave the country every 180 days. However, many of them only flied to a neighbouring country such as Nepal for a brief stay before returning.

New rules provide for the same 180-day deadlines but make it mandatory for tourist to stay out of the country for two months before they return.

The British High Commission has show concern on the tightened rules and taken up the matter with India government.

“We recognize Indian govt’s right to protect its citizens; but hope genuine tourists won’t be adversely affected,” it said.

US embassy has also criticized new rules saying that it has received reports about inconsistent implementation of the new rules.

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