National News

No more visa-on-arrival for Indians in Hong Kong from Monday

Those with diplomatic passports or a Hong Kong Travel Pass, and those who have successfully enrolled for the e-Channel service will be exempted.

Indians will have to do a pre-arrival registration for travelling to Hong Kong from Monday as the administration scraps visa-free facility for Indian nationals. However, those directly transiting the region by air will not require the registration, provided you do not leave the airport transit area. Those with diplomatic passports or a Hong Kong Travel Pass, and those who have successfully enrolled for the e-Channel service will still be able to visit Hong Kong with just a valid passport.

“The Pre-arrival Registration for Indian Nationals will be implemented on January 23. The online service for Pre-arrival Registration for Indian Nationals is now open,” the Hong Kong immigration department said on its official website. The registration will be valid for six months. Earlier, Indian nationals could visit Hong Kong with a valid passport and stay for up to 14 days without a prior visa.

Hong Kong’s decision to scrap visa-free travel for Indians was first reported in December 2016. There has been speculation that the decision was taken as the number of Indian asylum seekers was on the rise, according to PTI. However, Indian officials believe that Hong Kong is using the asylum seekers as a pretext to deny visa-free entry to Indians. There are also concerns that the move has been triggered by China.

Among the current backlog of 10,335 refugee applications in Hong Kong, 80% are from India, Pakistan, Vietnam, Bangladesh and Indonesia. Hong Kong’s Immigration Department Assistant Director Ma Chi-ming said that it was a pilot project and would be reviewed once it was launched. “We picked India as a testing point as it was one of the major source countries.”

The new rules will affect hundreds of thousands of Indians who visit the former British colony every year for both tourism and trade. According to Hindustan Times, as many as 561,625 Indian tourists visited Hong Kong in 2015.

We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content  BY 

These GIFs show you what it means to miss breakfast

That monstrous roar is your empty stomach.

Let’s take a glance at your every day morning routine. You crawl out of bed, go for a quick shower, pull out and wear your neatly ironed clothes at the speed of light and then rush out of the house, making sure you have your keys and wallet in place.

Giphy
Giphy

You walk into office, relieved because you have made it to work on time. Stifling yawns and checking emails, you wonder how your colleagues are charged up and buzzing with energy. “What is wrong with these people” you mumble to yourself.

Giphy
Giphy

Slowly, you start to change. You start snapping at colleagues and start arguing with your computer. You take out your frustration on anything or anyone in sight.

To add to the aggressive behaviour, you’ve completely lost your focus. After some time, you simply forget what you were doing.

Giphy
Giphy

Unable to bear the hunger pangs, you go for a mid-morning snack. It is only when a colleague asks you for a bite do you realize that you have developed into a fully formed, hunger fueled, monster. Try not to look at yourself in the mirror.

Giphy
Giphy

If only you had spared not even twenty or ten but just 5 minutes in the morning and not skipped breakfast, your story would look completely different - as you will see in this video.

Play

The fast dip in your mood and lack of focus is because your body has missed its most important meal of the day – breakfast. Research has shown that skipping a meal, especially in the morning, worsens the mood because there is a drop in the blood sugar. This in turn affects the levels of serotonin and dopamine, the chemicals produced in the brain that control our moods and feelings. In simpler English, not having breakfast is going to make you really cranky and confused!

Morning is also when the body needs maximum nutrition to function efficiently through the day as you’ve just woken up from a full 7 hours of no food (and if you’re sleeping less than that, that’s a whole other article).

So in short, having a breakfast could make you go from looking like the earlier GIFs to this:

Giphy
Giphy

But with changing lifestyles and most people hard pressed for time, a healthy breakfast is taking the backseat. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. MTR has come up with a range of widely loved Indian delicacies like Poha, Upma and Halwa which can be made in (hold you breath) just 3 minutes! All you have to do is add hot water and wait for 3 minutes to get a delicious and filling breakfast.

Giphy
Giphy

These amazing and delicious breakfasts can be made in a jiffy and consumed with the least hassle, even in the midst of your frenetic morning routine. So grab your #MTRbreakfastin3 to start the day on an awesome note.

Click here to make breakfast a part of your morning routine.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of MTR and not by the Scroll editorial team.