Hong Kong Indigenous founder Ray Wong Toi-yeung and former Hong Kong Federation of Students secretary general Alex Chow Yong-kang were denied visas to enter India on Wednesday to attend the InterEthnic InterFaith Leadership Conference.

Chow had previously attended the conference in April last year. As it was held in Washington D.C. he did not encounter any problems with his visa. Chow stated that he had already purchased his ticket to attend this year as well, but the visa was denied likely due to their names being blacklisted, Ming Pao reported.

Ray Wong Yeung-toi of Hong Kong Indigenous. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.
Ray Wong Yeung-toi of Hong Kong Indigenous. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Although Wong’s visa was rejected, the visa of fellow group member Edward Leung Tin-kei, who ran in the New Territories by-election in February, was not. Leung expressed disappointment over not being able to share the experience with Wong, RFA reported.

“I’m a little disappointed, because we had planned to attend the conference together, to enjoy it together, and to spread awareness about [Hong Kong Indigenous].”

The conference is hosted by Initiatives for China/Citizen Power For China, an organisation founded by Chinese dissident Dr. Jianli Yang. The conference seeks to advance mutual understanding, respect, and cooperation amongst different ethnic groups in support of a democratic China.

A visa to enter India was also recently denied for Chinese dissident Lu Jinghua. Lu was on her way to visit the Dalai Lama from her home in the United States, but was stopped by Air India officials at the airport and was unable to board the flight.

Isaac Cheung is pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism and Politics and Public Administration at the University of Hong Kong. During the Occupy Central protests, Isaac worked as an editor and reporter at LIVE: Verified Updates, a bilingual news page founded and maintained by HKU journalism students. He has also worked at Coconuts Hong Kong as a reporter.