The Pakistan High Commission in New Dehli said the group, which had wished to visit the Hafiz Abdullah Shah shrine near Agra, was denied entry into India between January 11 and 18.
“The decision to deny visa was inconsistent with the vision of leadership of both the countries and against the principles of Protocol on Visits to Religious Shrines, 1974, between the two countries,” officials in the Pakistani mission said.
However, Indian officials said that under the protocol, an organising committee or local authorities were only required “to extend logistical support” to the visa applicants.
Moreover, in this case, no organising committee or local authorities were ready to extend support to the group, officials said.
Earlier in October, spokesman for the Indian High Commissioner in Islamabad said there was “no delay” in issuing visas to Pakistani citizens and their activities were continuing as per routine.
This is not the first time Pakistani citizens have been denied visa for entry into the neighbouring country.
In June 2015, Pakistan’s under-17 wrestling team’s hopes of competing in the annual Cadet Asian Wrestling Championship were dashed after the Indian High Commission denied them visas for the event.
In December 2015, the Pakistan volleyball team could not participate in the AVC Continental Cup Beach Volleyball Championship Central Zone, scheduled to be held in Kerala, India, from Dec 18 to 20, after it failed to get Indian visa.
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