India revokes visa for Uighur activist blacklisted by China


India has revoked a visa given to a Germany-based ethnic Uighur activist to attend a conference at the headquarters of the Tibetan government-in-exile in northern India this month.

Home Ministry spokesman K.S. Dhatwalia on Monday confirmed the cancellation of Dolkun Isa’s visa, but refused to say why.

Isa told Indian TV news channel TimesNow the government notified him that his electronic visa had been canceled. He said there was no explanation but speculated it may have been because of Chinese pressure on the Indian government.

Isa is on a Chinese list of alleged terrorists.

China’s leaders are concerned about violence in the far western region of Xinjiang which is home to the Uighurs, a mostly Muslim ethnic Turkic minority critical of Beijing’s rule.

On Monday, Indian Express while quoting an Indian official claimed that issuance of Indian visa to Isa was likely to lead to a diplomatic row between New Delhi and Beijing.

The move, according to Indian Express, was being seen as a retaliatory measure after China blocked the listing of Jaish-e-Muhammad chief Masood Azhar as an international terrorist at the United Nations.

Isa was about to participate in a pro-democracy conference attended by Dalai Lama and organised by the US-based Initiatives for China.