On Diwali, India announces more medical visas for Pakistani patients

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Swaraj has been taking a sympathetic approach in granting medical visas to Pakistani nationals, notwithstanding strain in ties between India and Pakistan over a host of issues, including cross-border terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir. Earlier this month, Sushma Swaraj revealed that 19 Pakistanis have been given visas for treatment in India.

In a major humanitarian move and a Diwali gift to the people of Pakistan, India has made a decision to grant medical visas "in all deserving cases" to those desperately ill Pakistanis needing urgent treatment in India and whose visa applications were pending till Diwali-eve. Keeping her words, Sushma Swaraj asked a Pakistani woman named Amna Shamin to contact Indian High Commission in Pakistan to get a visa for visiting her ailing father.

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"We will give medical visa for his treatment in India", Swaraj said in a tweet on Tuesday after requests poured in from a number of Pakistani citizens on the platform. "We will allow this". The minister also responded positively to a request for a visa by Nazir Ahmed, whose eight-year-old child Mohammad Ahmed was awaiting medical visa for a year. Sushma tweeted, answering Kashif that your child's treatment should not be affected due to lack of medication. "@ChachaKashif", the External Affairs Minister tweeted in response. In a separate tweet, she also promised a visa to Muhammad Asif Malik's son, who is now in ICU in children's hospital in Lahore, and to Kasif Chacha's child who is running out of medicine. The woman's son, Rafique Memon, had requested Swaraj to intervene and grant a visa to his mother.