WHO IS A FOREIGNER
- Any person holding a passport issued by a foreign country is a foreigner.
- The immigration process consists of entry, stay, movement and exit of a foreigner.
- A ready reckoner: Passport is an official document or authorization issued to a person by the Govt. of his country to travel abroad.
- Visa is an official permission granted to a foreigner in the form of an official Mark or Seal or Sticker on the passport by the host country to enable the holder to visit/ Stay for a specified period in the country.
WHAT ABOUT PERSON OF INDIAN ORIGIN (PIO) ?
Every person of Indian origin, who is a citizen of another country will be eligible to apply for PIO Card if;
- The person at any time held an Indian Passport OR
- The person or either of his/her parents or grand parents or great grand parents was born in, and was permanently resident in India OR
- The person is the spouse of a citizen of India or a person of Indian origin covered under (i) or (ii) above.
Here are the exceptions:
The above are not applicable if they were or are citizen(s) of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Nepal, Pakistan or Srilanka.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS FOR PIO CARD HOLDERS?
- PIO Card holder does not require a separate VISA to visit India. The card is valid for 15 years.
- PIO Card holder will be exempt from the requirement of registration if his stay on any single visit in India does not exceed 180 days.
- In the event of continuous stay in India of the PIO Card holder exceeding 180 days, he/she shall have to get himself/herself registered within 30 days of the expiry of 180 days with the concerned Foreigners Regional Registration Officer/Foreingers Registration Officer. For minor children, no registration is required on any type of Visa.
- The PIO card holder doesn’t require a student VISA for undertaking studies in India and similarly no Employment VISA will be required for taking up employment in India.
- The PIO Card holder shall enjoy parity with NRIs in respect of facilities available in economic, financial and education fields except in matters relating to acquisition of agriculture plantation/properties. However, no parity will be allowed in the sphere of political rights.
PIO Card is valid for 15 years and can be applied online at all Indian Missions/posts, where the applicant is ordinarily resident. The applicants already in India can make their online application (www.boi.gov.in) to FRROs, Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Amritsar, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
- Indian Passport/travel document of the applicant or either of his/her parents or grand parents or great grand parents
- Passport of foreign country indicating the place of birth of the applicant in India.
- Any other document satisfactorily proving the residence/nationality of the applicant as an Indian ex. Revenue records/domicile certificate/school, college leaving certificates, etc.
A fee of Indian Rs.15,000/- or equivalent in local foreign country shall be payable along with the application. The fee for a PIO Card for a minor child (upto 18 years of age) will be Rs.7,500/-
GRATIS PIO CARD:-
Gratis PIO Card may be issued to an exceptionally eminent person of Indian Origin who plays an important role in building bridges between India and the country of his/her adoption. A sworn statement before the officer of the Embassy/Mission by the “exceptionally eminent PIO” should suffice the purpose of grant of gratis PIO.
DUPLICATE PIO CARD:
In the event of the loss of PIO Card, a duplicate card may be issued after charging a fee of Rs.100 US$ or equivalent local currency.
Indian constitution does not allow dual citizenship i.e, holding of Indian Citizenship and Citizenship of foreign country simultaneously.
However, the Govt. of India decided to grant Overseas Citizenship of India to persons of Indian origin of certain category who migrated from India and acquitted citizenship of foreign country other than Pakistan and Bangladesh, as long as their home countries allow dual citizenship in some form or other under their local laws.
OVERSEAS CITIZENSHIP OF INDIA (OCI):
The following categories of persons can be registered as Overseas Citizen of India
Any person of full age and capacity:
- Who is a citizen of another country, but was a citizen of India at the time of or at any time after 26th January 1950;
- Who is a citizen of another country, but was eligible to become a citizen of India as on 26th January 1950;
- Who is a citizen of another country, but belonged to territory that became a part of India after the 15th day of August 1947. Or
- Who is a child or grand child of such citizen or
- Any person, who is a minor child of a person mentioned in clause
- A multiple entry, multi-purpose life long visa (U Visa) for visiting India.
- Exemption from registration with FRRO/FRO for any length of time.
- Parity with NRI’s in economic, financial and educational fields except in matters relating to acquisition of agricultural/plantation properties.
Any eligible person can submit an application online to the Indian Mission/Post of the country of applicant’s citizenship or where he/she is not in the country of citizenship, to the Indian Mission/Post of the country in which he/she is ordinarily resident (www.boi.gov.in). If the applicant is in India, he/she can apply to the FRRO at Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Amritsar, CHIO, Chennai, or to the Under Secretary, OCI Cell, Foreigners Division, MHA, New Delhi.
- Proof of present citizenship
- Evidence of the applicant or his/her parents or grand parents being of Indian Origin ex:- copy of Pass port or domicile certificate issued by the competent authority or any other proof substantiating the request.
- Evidence of relationship of the applicant with his/her parents/grand parents, if their Indian origin is claimed as a basis of grant of OCI.
US $ 275 or equivalent in local currency for each applicant, US $ 25 or equivalent in local currency for each PIO Card holder. The fee for issue of OCI Card to a minor, who is already holding a PIO Card is US $ 145.
DUPLICATE OCI CARD:
In the event of the loss of card, a duplicate card may be issued after charging a fee of Rs.100 US$ or equivalent local currency.
For re-issuance of the card in case of new passport, change of personal particulars, wrong filling of particulars, a fee of Rs. 25 US $ will be charged.