Groups linked with Chinese think tanks in India under scanner; visas for such people only after security clearance
New Delhi: Several groups in India having links with Chinese think tanks are under the scanner of Indian intelligence agencies. The government has put stringent checks on the issuance of visas to individuals associated with China's "growing outreach network" comprising think-tanks, cultural and trade organizations, public policy groups, and academics based on the intelligence reports.
The Ministry of External Affairs has been asked to inform missions abroad that visas sponsored by some of the organizations under the scanner will only be issued after security clearance. The clearance will be given only after scrutiny is done by the agencies concerned.
The note further stated that the Chinese government has built an outreach system comprising think tanks all over the world with an objective to influence sections in countries on strategic interest.
Many of these organizations are based in India but are backed by China sponsoring visas for policymakers, think tanks, political parties, upcoming leaders, corporates, academics and research entities, etc. Sources said that it has also been noticed that some individuals are indulged in espionage.
A list of such organizations in India that have links with China has also been created based on intelligence reports.
Some of these think-tanks are important components of China's soft power and claim to have social activists, scholars and representatives from all walks of life. Their goal is to influence policy decisions in the targeted countries.
The communication to this effect was circulated last month amid the India-China border tussle in Ladakh that began early May. The development comes after the Indian government decided to put a ban on Chinese mobile apps amid the military hostilities.
On Thursday, India and China agreed to resolve outstanding issues in an "expeditious manner" and in accordance with the existing agreements and protocols, said the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) after holding a fresh round of diplomatic talks to resolve the border standoff in eastern Ladakh.
MEA Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said that the two sides had a "candid and in-depth" exchange of views on the existing situation on the Line of Actual Control, and reaffirmed to sincerely work towards complete disengagement of the troops in the western sector.