Sports

Not Fair: Arunachal Body Condemns China For Wushu Visas

Arunachal Olympic Association terms stapled visas as “discrimination” 

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Some of the members of the wushu team are participating in the Hangzhou Asian Games.
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China’s handing stapled visas to Wushu players from Arunachal Pradesh has not gone down well with the Arunachal Olympic Association (AOA). 

On Saturday, the AOA accused China of committing a “discriminatory act” against the state’s people.

On Wednesday, eight players and four officials were to leave for Chengdu, China, for the World University Games. But when three female players from Arunachal Pradesh - Nyeman Wangsu, Onilu Tega and Mepung Lamgu - were issued 'stapled visas' by the Chinese embassy in Itanagar, the government asked them to not travel. 

“Issuing of a stapled visa to our three promising Wushu athletes was not only a discriminatory act from the part of the Chinese but also an insult to the whole nation," AOA Secretary General Bamang Tago said in a statement.

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A stapled visa is a country’s way of asserting control over a region. In this case it is way of China saying Arunachal Pradesh belongs to them. 

On Thursday, India described China’s treatment of the athletes as "unacceptable" and that it has the right to "suitably respond".

External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said on Thursday that India has registered a "strong protest" with China on this subject. India has stressed  that there should be no discrimination on the basis of domicile or ethnicity in the visa regime for Indian citizens.

AOA’s Tago said, "China has now become an important location for international sports events and will continue to host more in the future. In such a scenario, sportspersons from Arunachal Pradesh will be deprived in days to come for no fault of theirs.”

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The AOA has called a special general body meeting in Itanagar on August 5 to decide its strategy to fight discrimination against athletes from the state.

"AOA will lead the movement and we will seek intervention from all stakeholders for justice and the right of Arunachalee sportspersons to participate in international sporting events," Tago said.

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