India to allow entry of certain category of foreigners, including OCI holders

The Indian government has decided to allow certain categories of foreigners, including Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) cardholders, to enter India amid restrictions on the entry of people from abroad due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Among those allowed entry into India are married couples one of whom is an OCI cardholder and another Indian national, and students who are OCI cardholders and whose one parent is Indian or an OCI cardholder.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has allowed certain categories of foreigners, including OCI cardholders and minors who hold OCI cards and whose parents are Indian nationals, a senior ministry official told PTI.

Foreigners were restricted from visiting India ever since the nationwide lockdown was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24 to check the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Foreign nationals who are single parents of minor children holding Indian passports or OCI cards, students who are foreign nationals where at least one of their parents is an Indian citizen or an OCI cardholder were allowed to visit India.

Dependent family members of foreign diplomats and official and service passport holding service staff accredited to foreign diplomatic missions, consular offices or accredited international organisations in India can now come to India.

The OCI cardholders who wish to come to India on account of family emergencies like critical medical conditions of immediate family members or death are allowed to visit India. However, these foreign nationals will have to obtain a fresh visa of appropriate category from the Indian Missions and posts abroad, PTI stated.

Foreign nationals holding a valid long-term multiple entry visa of appropriate category issued by the Indian missions and posts abroad will have to get the visa re-validated from the Indian Mission and post concerned.

Such foreign nationals will not be permitted to travel to India on the strength of any electronic visa obtained earlier.