New Delhi, Jan 7: The Sino-Indian relations have gone on the back foot with New Delhi calling off the China visit by a military delegation after Beijing allegedly refused to grant visa to an Indian Air Force (IAF) fighter pilot from Arunachal Pradesh.
The four-day trip by the 30-member Integrated Defence Staff starting on Sunday was part of the defence exchange programme between the two nations.
According to certain media reports, China refused to grant visa to Group Captain M. Panging, an IAF Sukhoi-30 MKI fighter pilot posted at Tezpur, Assam, because he hailed from Arunachal Pradesh.
This move has, however, not gone down well with India that has expressed its disappointment and lodged its protest with China.
It may be recalled here that this is not the first time that China has denied visa to an Indian military officer.
Lieutenant General BS Jaswal, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Northern Command, was earlier denied visa by China in 2010 on the ground that he controlled operations a disputed area, Jammu and Kashmir.
India had then suspended defence exchanges with China as a reaction to the denial of visa to Lieutenant General BS Jaswal. The defence exchanges were, however, later restored between the two sides. (ANI)