Despite tension, Sushma Swaraj assists two ailing Pakistanis
Even amid escalating tension with Pakistan, Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj has continued her social media diplomacy and came to the help of two Pakistanis within hours of their requests. Both applicants had sought medical visas, one for her three-year-old daughter and another for her sick father. In June, Swaraj had issued medical visa for an ailing four-month-old Pakistani infant.
In the latest cases, Uzair Humayun reached out to Swaraj on Twitter: "My 3yrs old daughter needs urgent heart surgery,kindly help me in issuing visa." Noorma Habib had a similar request: "we applied for indian medical visa for liver transplant of my father he is in bad condition.We will be thankful to u." Swaraj assured both they would be given the requisite visas.
For individuals from Pakistan, it is necessary to obtain visa clearances from the department of visa clearance, Ministry of Home Affairs. This has often been excused by Swaraj on humanitarian grounds as Pakistan allegedly complicates the process for its citizens.
In July, Swaraj sent a strong message to Islamabad that PoK belonged to India: she granted a medical visa to a PoK resident. Osama Ali had alleged Pakistan's Foreign Ministry adviser Sartaj Aziz had refused to write to Indian High Commission for his visa. Swaraj cemented her stand by stating that visa rules weren't applicable to PoK as it is an integral part of India.