India should enable on-arrival visas at all points of entry

A mutually deregulated visa treaty can reduce costs and time spent by border officials and travelers alike

India is reported to be considering initiatives to spread visa on arrival and electronic travel authorisation facilities to tourists at airports from a large number of countries, including Bangladesh.

While such a move would be welcome if implemented, there is unfortunately to date no clarification on the past bilateral discussions for a special travel agreement arrangement between Bangladesh and India.

There is still a strong case for implementing such an agreement, as any new visa facilities in India are only likely to be initially implemented at a few airports and only apply to tourists.

Given that Bangladesh shares a large land border with India, and our citizens frequently visit the country for a variety of purposes ranging from business to medical visits, mutual trade and relations would be increased further by facilitating the same ease of visa facilities for other purposes and at all crossing points.

The agreement proposed in 2012 would have initially been restricted to certain categories of travelers, with Bangladesh also allowing Indian nationals to get similar visas. It would for example have greatly eased the process of obtaining an Indian visa in advance for medical patients facing time pressures. A mutually deregulated visa treaty can still serve these aims and reduce costs and time spent by border officials and travelers alike.

A special travel agreement treaty between Bangladesh and India would still provide a meaningful gesture of goodwill and be beneficial to the peoples of both our two countries.

Source: Dhaka Tribune


  1. Hindu nationalists burn magazine over interview DELHI : Protesters burned copies of Indian magazine on Friday in protest at an article that linked a string of deadly attacks on Muslims to a Hindu nationalist leader close to India’s main opposition party.The Caravan, a monthly that covers politics and culture, published the article in its February edition based on interviews with Swami Aseemanand from the jail where he is awaiting trial for militant attacks around India that killed more than 100 people between 2006 and 2008. In the interviews, Aseemanand said the attacks were sanctioned by Mohan Bhagwat, who leads Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), India’s largest Hindu nationalist organization, which has close ties to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
    Opinion polls show the BJP has a chance of forming India’s next government after elections due by May. Most BJP leaders have been members of the RSS – considered the ideological incubator for Hindu nationalism. The RSS has denied the allegations against Bhagwat and said the interviews were fake. Since the magazine’s publication, Aseemanand has denied making the comments. Hindu hardliners protesting outside The Caravan’s offices accused the magazine of working with the Congress party government.“We’re protesting against Caravan because it’s hand-in-hand with Congress,” said Vishnu Gupta, president of a group called Hindu Sena, or Hindu Army. Vinod K. Jose, executive editor of The Caravan said that instead of criticizing the magazine, the BJP and the protesters should call for an investigation of Aseemanand’s allegations. “They are trying to attack the messenger,” he said.


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