Islamabad, Pakistan: Pakistan and India have signed a comprehensive visa agreement in broader sense on Saturday. Interior minister Rehman Malik and Indian external affairs minister SM Krishna inked the agreement.
According to the new agreement citizens, ”Aged 65 and above, would now be able to walk across the border between the two countries and need not go through the hassles of getting a visa from embassies in New Delhi and Islamabad. Artists would be able to have triple entry while people aged more than 65, children below 12 and eminent businessmen are exempted from police reporting.”
Another ease for senior citizens is that they will be granted visas on arrival at the Attari and Wagah border in India and Pakistan respectively. There was no such provision available for senior citizens of both countries. Under the new arrangement, senior citizens will be granted a visa on arrival valid for 45 days.
According to the officials “The senior citizens can visit the other country easily now.” There will be a single-entry visitor visa for a maximum period of six months but the stay cannot exceed three months at a time and for five places (currently limited to three places). Group tourist visas, for groups of 10-50 people, has also been introduced for the first time. This will also be available for students provided they do not seek admission in the other country.
The business visa will have to be issued within five weeks. Another simplified rule will allow people to enter and exit from different check posts and change their mode of travel.
“However, this is subject to the exception that exit from Wagah/Attari, by road (on foot) cannot be accepted, unless the entry was also by foot via Attari/Wagah,” the statement said.
Spouse of a national of one country married to person of another country and children below 12 accompanying parent(s). Transit visa will now be issued within 36 hours instead of 72 hours.