22,000 students enrolled in Chinese universities stranded in India for 2 years

It’s been two years since the outbreak of the Covid pandemic, which led to around 22,000 Indian students (mostly studying medicine) from China to head back home. However, students from countries like Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Thailand and Solomon Islands are allowed to return to their universities in China recently. Yet, no such permission is available for Indian students. They are attending online classes, but it’s time for practicals for many,  for which they have to attend offline classes.
The India-China standoff began in 2020 with the Galwan clash in eastern Ladakh when 20 Indian soldiers were killed. Since then, things have not settled between the two nations. “We hope China will take a non-discriminatory approach since it involves the future of young people,’’ said External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar after a meeting with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in New Delhi last month. “We requested the Chinese minister to expedite the process of Indian students’ return.”
As a retaliatory step, valid visas that Chinese nationals had for visiting India have been scrapped. The Ministry of External Affairs, however, says visas have been revoked due to the Covid threat from China.
Amid this diplomatic standoff, students are a worried lot. “We can only wait for further notice,’’ said Mominur Rahaman, a student of South West Medical University.
Such students are running a campaign on social media called ‘Take us back to China.’ “Let us request the authorities again. We can’t be just simply waiting anymore. We must have an update on our return,’’ tweeted a representative group, Indian Students in China. China is preferred by Indian students who want to study medicine because the admission process in easy and fees are lower than in India.
Practicals and online classes, prime concern
Indian students who returned from China in 2020 shortly after the outbreak of the pandemic are still stranded at home. For many, online classes will not do any more because there are practical  lessons for which they have to attend offline classes. The external affairs ministry is trying to send them back to China.


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