Indians fume as Malaysia eVisa facility faces tech glitch

A service disruption in Malaysia’s eVisa portal leading to subsequent announcement of single-entry visas into the country has left Indians wanting to travel to the country fuming.

The Malaysian High Commission in New Delhi announced on its social media last week that due to the service disruption of the eVisa portal, the single-entry visa into Malaysia will be temporarily processed by the visa section at the consulates in Chennai, Mumbai, or New Delhi.

This means that Indian citizens will now have to personally hand over the visa applications at the Malaysian consulates.

Malaysia’s eVisa website, which is the online facility to apply for a visa to Malaysia, was down since September 26. It started functioning two days back.

“This is really frustrating now… it’s almost one week the server is down. Our flight ticket is booked that is also non-returnable… Now they are asking come to Delhi to apply the Visa. Is that really possible from all India location? How they are saying this type of unprofessional statement (sic)?” Amrita, a Twitter user, said.

“What about the applications that were already submitted? Already paid the visa fee and even 4-5 days were completed and then the website went down. Will the visa be sent over email in those cases?” Firdous Rawani, who will be travelling to Malaysia this month, tweeted.

“Our flight is in 8 days. Hopefully you will process the visa and share it over email,” Pranjal Agarwal, a Bangalore resident, tweeted to the Malaysian High Commission in New Delhi.

Under the single entry visa, issuing group visas for Indian tourists has been temporarily stopped. A maximum of six days are needed to process the visa applications, which cost Rs 1,000 (RM57).

The e-visa issued earlier by Malaysia had a validity of three months and allowed entry to that country within 30 days. However, with the change in visa rules, Indian citizens who booked non-refundable tickets would lose money if they don’t receive the visa.

“Sir please do something about this problem I already pay my visa fees and book flight ticket hotel booking, But now from last week their system is not working, and they asking to apply again manually? With another fees (sic),” Gursharan Singh tweeted requesting External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar to intervene.

“Kindly intervene (S Jaishankar). Their eVisa site down from 10 days. No response from Malaysia embassy. Flights/ hotels booked…” Aditya tweeted.

For Indian tourists who do not wish to personally visit the consulates in Delhi, Mumbai or Chennai, they can apply for a visa-on-arrival but on the condition that they arrive in Malaysia via Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, or Brunei with a valid visa from either country, The Star reported.

According to estimates, India is the top contributor of foreign arrivals into Malaysia with 71,481 arrivals between January and June 2022.

(Meenakshi Iyer can be reached at meenakshi.i@ians.in)

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