Republican lawmakers on Friday criticised President Joe Biden for imposing restrictions on travel from India in view of the sudden surge in COVID-19 cases in the country.

“Restricting travel to our ally India while leaving our border open to Mexico is not rational,” Congressman Tim Burchett said in a tweet, soon after the White House announced Biden’s decision.

“The policy will be implemented in light of extraordinarily high COVID-19 caseloads and multiple variants circulating in India. The policy will take effect on Tuesday, May 4,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki had said on Friday.

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Another Republican lawmaker Jodey Arrington also criticised Biden for this proclamation on travel.

“Biden enacting an India travel ban while keeping the border open is like locking your front door, but leaving the back door wide open. I wonder if the Left will accuse him of being xenophobic and anti-Hindu,” Arrington asked.

“As Biden bans flights from India, perhaps he should be reminded of a tweet he put out last year. Also, I thought travel bans were xenophobic,” Congresswoman Lauren Boebert said in a tweet.

After the then-president Donald Trump had imposed a travel ban from Europe, Biden then the Democratic presidential candidate, had opposed it.

Also Read: US President Joe Biden restricts travel from India to US due to the COVID-19 outbreak

“A wall will not stop coronavirus. Banning all travel from Europe – or any other part of the world – will not stop it. The disease could impact every nation and any person on the planet – and we need a plan to combat it,” Biden had said in a tweet on March 12 last year.

Indian-American Congressman Ro Khanna, however, supported the travel ban.

“I support the Biden Administration’s travel restrictions from India, which many in the Indian American community have called for,” he said.

“But what we really need to do is prioritise lives over excess profits. Pfizer and Moderna need to license their vaccine formulas,” Khanna said.