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Disheartened Wushu players return to Arunachal Pradesh after being denied visa for Asian Games

IANS | September 26, 2023 02:35 PM

NEW DELHI: The three Wushu players from Arunachal Pradesh, who have not been able to travel to Hangzhou, China for the 19th Asian Games after being denied visa by Chinese authorities, returned to their home state on Tuesday.

The three female Wushu players -- Nyeman Wangsu, Onilu Tega and Mepung Lamgu -- from Arunachal Pradesh were scheduled to fly out to China on Wednesday night from IGI Airport. But could not take the flight as two of them were given stapled visas by the Chinese authorities after first being denied accreditation by the Hangzhou Asian Games Organising Committee (HAGOC).

The Indian government has refused to take the stapled visa and the two players could not take the flight. One player, who was given the accreditation, was told at the airport that her visa was only to Hong Kong and therefore she too did not board the flight.

Reacting to the entire episode, Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur said: "According to the Olympic Charter, visas were supposed to be granted. This was also the responsibility of the Asian Olympic Committee, and even China should have been granted a visa for any athlete representing India from any corner of India.

"But the behavior was not good. We did not accept the discrimination, and that's why I want to say again, Arunachal Pradesh is an integral and will remain an integral part of India... India will not bow down."

On Friday, the Sports Minister cancelled his visit to China for the Asian Games as a mark of protest against that country's decision to deny accreditation and entry to the Indian Wushu team players for the mega sports event.

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