Following a security goof-up, two Chinese tourists from Hong Kong recently visited Arunachal Pradesh despite a strict restriction on the entry of people of some countries in the frontier state. The incident came to light only when copies of the Protected Area Permit (PAP) issued to the two Chinese tourists — Young James John and Wu Chong Shong were recovered at a hotel in Bomdila town in West Kameng district of Arunachal.
While other foreign nationals need PAP to enter Arunachal Pradesh, the citizens from China, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar require Restricted Area Permit (RAP) — a document issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs to enter the state.
Confessing the goof-up, the office of Resident’s Commissioner, which issues PAP to tourists, said, ‘ We are looking into the matter. It seems there is some kind of goof-up. The two Chinese nationals were issued PAP instead of RAP by the then deputy resident commissioner (DRC), Arunachal Pradesh, at Guwahati on August 30 this year.’
The goof-up happened a fortnight before Beijing protested US envoy Richard Verma’s visit to Tawang in October and warned New Delhi against the proposed visit of the 14 th Dalai Lama on an invitation from Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu in March next year. The incident has also raised question over the security scenario as the two Chinese ‘tourists’ were given PAPs to visit Tawang, West Kameng and Lower Subansiri districts for 30 days from September 12 for ‘tourism purposes.’