Pakistan slams India for playing politics over medical visas

Published: November 15, 2017
FO spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal. PHOTO: File

FO spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal. PHOTO: File

ISLAMABAD: The Foreign Office on Wednesday lamented India’s policy of denying medical visas to Pakistani patients and informed reporters that a Pakistani cancer patient, who was snubbed by India, had returned home after a successful surgery in Turkey.

Flanked by Osama Ali Khan, who had to travel to Turkey for liver cancer treatment after India denied him a medical visa, FO spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal said New Delhi was playing politics over humanitarian issues.

“India is continuing to impose a condition on Pakistani patients seeking medical treatment in India that they must possess a reference letter from the foreign minister to be granted a visa,” he told reporters at a press conference.

India ‘tightens’ medical visa rules for Pakistanis

“The Indian’s government attitude towards these patients is inhuman and a tactic to create more difficulties for them,” he added.

The FO spokesperson thanked the Turkish government for issuing a visa to Osama on an urgent basis.

Sharing his experience, Osama said he appreciated the efforts of the people who had worked tirelessly and explored all options available to save his life.

“When I was diagnosed with liver cancer earlier this year, I had come to know after an exhaustive search that its treatment was only available in India,” he recalled.

Osama immediately applied for an Indian visa, but to his “utter disappointment and shock, his purely humanitarian request was politicised”.

Pakistani woman turns to Sushma Swaraj for cancer treatment in India

“In response to my request, the Indian government chose to play up the Jammu and Kashmir dispute by falsely calling Jammu and Kashmir an integral part of India and the residents of Azad Jammu and Kashmir Indian citizens,” he remarked.

“I vehemently reject India’s false claims on the Jammu and Kashmir issue,” he added.

After this episode, the Pakistani government came to Osama’s rescue and immediately contacted the Turkish government for his treatment.

He went to Turkey on August 5 and underwent surgery on August 27.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • Santosh Menon
    Nov 15, 2017 - 11:04PM

    I have so many Pakistani friends here in the US, having said that, I feel this guy is playing politics. If that’s the case, please advice your citizens to apply VISA’s for medical treatment in China & Turkey. Recommend

  • vinsin
    Nov 15, 2017 - 11:48PM

    Indian Medical facilities are not for Pakistani. They have no contribution in the development of that. Trade is also an humanitarian issue, Pakistan plays politics in that. Indian VISA are not god given right of Pakistan, just like VISA of any other country. They are always on case to case basis. In his case it was Pakistan FO who refused to support his treatment necessity in written. Recommend

  • Zen
    Nov 16, 2017 - 12:05AM

    @Santosh Menon:
    More and more Chinese are now going to India for medical care.Recommend

  • Praful R Shah
    Nov 16, 2017 - 12:40AM

    Beggar’s do not have choice. Pakistani can go to any place in the world including their all-weather friend China. Nobody is stopping you.Recommend

  • Rahul
    Nov 16, 2017 - 12:59AM

    Indian embassy got scared when Osama applied for visa.Recommend

  • Ruby
    Nov 16, 2017 - 2:57AM

    Holds a press conference, says India is playing politics about medical visas, ends it by saying Kashmir is not integral part of India. Wah!!Recommend

  • raj
    Nov 16, 2017 - 4:33AM

    I had never heard of any pak govt authority thanking India for any of those urgent visas issued to it’s citizen.Suddenly pak foreign office has become so proactive to give a official statement on denial of one visa.
    Is it because Mrs.Sushma swaraj is getting lot of praise for her work.Recommend

  • Gratgy
    Nov 16, 2017 - 8:11AM

    Well then now there is Turkey as an alternative, Indian government is under no obligation to provide medical visaRecommend

  • Khan
    Nov 16, 2017 - 9:28AM

    Rather than lamenting what your openly declared enemy is doing, how about building up health facilities in Pakistan so people do not need to run hither and tither to get medical treatment? Shame on Pakistani govt.Recommend

  • globalahmadiyya
    Nov 16, 2017 - 2:25PM

    Mother(Pakistani Govt) does not provide meals and Father( Establishment) does not allow to beg.For ordinary citizens have to rot in the country..Indian hospitals are built by Indian tax payers they have their first right.If Pakistanis want affordable treatment they must ask their Foreign Office to expedite case rather than blame India.After so many successful operations of Pakistanis in India,still Pakistanis like to blame India then even Allah cannot save such nation.Recommend

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