This paper presents a novel approach to implement bilateral control loops between local haptic devices and remote industrial manipulators using a layer of simulation and virtual reality. The remote scene of manipulation has been visualized in an open-source software environment, where forward and inverse kinematics of the manipulators can be computed. Therefore, the explicit knowledge of mathematical models of the robots is not required for the implementation of the proposed bilateral control schemes. A haptic coupling has been designed between the human operator and the task in the remote environment. Virtually introduced force feedback has contributed to the performance of the proposed bilateral loop by facilitating the adaptation of unexperienced human operators. Teleoperation of one remote manipulator has been experimentally demonstrated with the proposed controllers. Structural modularity of the bilateral haptic control schemes makes them directly extendable for the teleoperation of multiple collaborative robots. Stability and transparency of the proposed bilateral haptic controllers have been theoretically and experimentally investigated.