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Pakistan and India will soon introduce multiple visa facilities for each other’s nationals. The facility will be extended to the members of the divided families living in the two countries.

The visa will be valid for a period of two years and the holder would be entitled to visit Pakistan/India any number of times. An agreement in this regard is expected to be signed when Foreign Minister Khurshid Mahmood Kasuri visits New Delhi in the third week of February. The two countries will hold their joint commission’s meeting on the occasion. The meeting will review the progress made by the six sub-commissions out of the eight constituted by the joint commission at its inaugural meeting held in Islamabad.

“Under the new policy, citizens and businessmen of both countries would get a seven-day open visa with no restrictions on visiting a particular city or place. They would be allowed to move anywhere,” the official said. According to the proposed agreement, tourists would also be offered a 15-day visa if they visit in the form of delegations or groups. “Earlier, Indian and Pakistani tourists were not given visas in groups,” the official pointed out. India is to open a new visa counter in Lahore while Pakistan will set up another visa counter in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh. Currently, the two countries issue visas only from Mumbai, New Delhi, Karachi and Islamabad.

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