Emergency Contact : 055-571-0041 , 055-500-5538

cons[dot]Bishkek[at]mea[dot]gov[dot]in

General Instructions

banner-icon

OVERSEAS CITIZENSHIP OF INDIA (OCI) CARDHOLDER

Introduction

The OCI Scheme is operational since 02.12.2005.

2. The Constitution of India does not allow holding Indian citizenship and citizenship of a foreign country simultaneously. Based on the recommendation of the High Level Committee on Indian Diaspora, the Government of India decided to register Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs) of certain category, as has been specified in section 7A of the Citizenship Act, 1955, as Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) Cardholders.

3. Application for registration as OCI Cardholder can be made Online. For this purpose, please visit https://ociservices.gov.in/. Before filling the application, Instructions may be perused so that there is no mistake in submission of application. Further, the details regarding Fee and Offices where original supporting documents have to be submitted for prior verification may also be perused.

4. Registered OCI Cardholders shall be entitled to the following benefits:

(1) Multiple entry lifelong visa for visiting India for any purpose:

Provided that for undertaking the following activities, the OCI Cardholder shall be required to obtain a special permission or a Special Permit, as the case may be, from the competent authority or the Foreigners Regional Registration Officer or the Indian Mission concerned, namely:

  1. to undertake research;

  2. to undertake any Missionary or Tabligh or Mountaineering or Journalistic activities;

  3. to undertake internship in any foreign Diplomatic Missions or foreign Government organisations in India or to take up employment in any foreign Diplomatic Missions in India;

  4. to visit any place which falls within the Protected or Restricted or prohibited areas as notified by the Central Government or competent authority;

Note: For requisite special permission, OCI Cardholder may visit https://ociservices.gov.in/

(2) exemption from registration with the Foreigners Regional Registration Officer or Foreigners Registration Officer for any length of stay in India:

Provided that the OCI Cardholders who are normally resident in India shall intimate the jurisdictional Foreigners Regional Registration Officer or the Foreigners Registration Officer by email whenever there is a change in permanent residential address and in their occupation;

(3) parity with Indian nationals in the matter of:

  1. tariffs in air fares in domestic sectors in India; and

  2. entry fees to be charged for visiting national parks, wildlife sanctuaries, the national monuments, historical sites and museums in India;

(4) parity with Non-Resident Indians in the matter of:

  1. inter-country adoption of Indian children subject to the compliance of the procedure as laid down by the competent authority for such adoption;

  2. appearing for the all India entrance tests such as National Eligibility cum Entrance Test, Joint Entrance Examination (Mains), Joint Entrance Examination (Advanced) or such other tests to make them eligible for admission only against any Non-Resident Indian seat or any supernumerary seat:

Provided that the OCI Cardholder shall not be eligible for admission against any seat reserved exclusively for Indian citizens;

  1. purchase or sale of immovable properties other than agricultural land or farm house or plantation property; and

  2. pursuing the following professions • in India as per the provisions contained in the applicable relevant statutes or Acts as the case may be, namely:

  1. doctors, dentists, nurses and pharmacists;

  2. advocates;

  3. architects;

  4. chartered accountants;

(5) in respect of all other economic, financial and educational fields not specified in this notification or the rights and privileges not covered by the notifications made by the Reserve Bank of India under The Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (42 of 1999), the OCI Cardholder shall have the same rights and privileges as a foreigner.

(6) Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) Cardholders are eligible for appointment as teaching faculty in IITs, NITs, IIMs, IISERs, IISc, Central Universities and in the new AIIMS set up under Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY).

Explanation

5. The following may be noted:

  1. The OCI Cardholder (including a PIO cardholder) is a foreign national holding passport of a foreign country and is not a citizen of India.

  2. “Non-Resident Indian” shall have the same meaning as assigned to it in The Foreign Exchange Management (Acquisition and Transfer of Immovable Property in India) Regulations, 2018 made by the Reserve Bank of India under The Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (42 of 1999) and who fulfils the “Non-Resident Indian” status as per The Income Tax Act, 1961 (43 of 1961).

  3. Any other benefits to an OCI Cardholder may be notified by the Central Government under section 7B(1) of The Citizenship Act, 1955.

6. Benefits to which OCI Cardholder is not entitled to

  1. The OCI Cardholder is not entitled to vote, be a member of Legislative Assembly or Legislative Council or Parliament, cannot hold Constitutional posts such as President, Vice President, Judge of Supreme Court or High Court etc. as specified in section 7B(2) of the Citizenship Act, 1955.

  2. The OCI Cardholder shall not be entitled for appointment to public services and posts in connection with the affairs of the Union or of any State except for appointment in such services and posts as the Central Government may, by special order, in that behalf, specify.

  1. Further, the OCI Cardholder cannot acquire agricultural land or farmhouse or plantation properties in India.

7. State Governments have been requested to ensure that the OCI Cardholder registration booklets of OCI Cardholders are treated as their identification for any services rendered to them.

8. A person registered as an OCI Cardholder is eligible to apply for grant of Indian citizenship under section 5(1) (g) of The Citizenship Act, 1955 if he/she has attained full age (18 year) and if he/she is registered as OCI Cardholder for five years and is ordinarily resident in India for twelve months before making an application for registration. Central Government, if it is satisfied that special circumstances exist, may after recording the circumstances in writing, relax the period of twelve months, up to a maximum of thirty days which may be in different breaks.

Eligibility for OCI Card

9. A foreign national, - (i) who was a citizen of India at the time of, or at any time after 26th January, 1950; or (ii) who was eligible to become a citizen of India on 26th January, 1950; or (iii) who belonged to a territory that became part of India after 15th August, 1947; or (iv) who is a child or a grandchild or a great grandchild of such a citizen; or (v) who is a minor child of such persons mentioned above; or (vi) who is a minor child and whose both parents are citizens of India or one of the parents is a citizen of India - is eligible for registration as OCI cardholder.

10. Besides, spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India or spouse of foreign origin of an Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder and whose marriage has been registered and subsisted for a continuous period of not less than two years immediately preceding the presentation of the application is also eligible for registration as OCI cardholder.

11. However, no person, who or either of whose parents or grandparents or great grandparents is or had been a citizen of Pakistan, Bangladesh or such other country as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, specify, shall be eligible for registration as an Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder.

12. Foreign nationals cannot apply for OCI in India while on Tourist Visa, Missionary Visa and Mountaineering Visa. Moreover, the foreigner has to be ordinarily resident of India to be eligible to apply for OCI registration in India. [Note: 'ordinarily resident' will mean a person staying in a particular country or in India for a continuous period of 6 months.]

Procedure for submission of application

13. Application for registration as OCI can be made Online. Before filling the application, instructions may be perused so that there is no mistake in submission of application. Further, the details regarding Fee and Offices where applications have to be filed may also be perused.

14. To apply for OCI Registration, please visit https://ociservices.gov.in/welcome

15. Documents to be submitted with the application

(1) Proof of present citizenship: 

(i) Copy of present valid passport (applicable in all cases), with validity of minimum 6 months at the time of submission of application. 

(ii) Copy of the certificate of registration of citizenship/naturalization (as the case may be), for the present nationality of the applicant (applicable in all cases). 

(iii) Cancelled/ Surrendered Indian passport with Surrender Certificate (for those who have surrendered Indian passport in or after 2010). 

(2) Evidence of address of the place of application 

(i) Copy of the Electricity Bill/ Telephone Bill in own/ parents/ grandparents/ spouse name. 

(ii) If the above is in any other relative’s name, undertaking from the relative stating that the foreigner is residing with him/ her. 

(iii) Lease License in case of tenants. 

(3) Evidence of self or parents or grandparents or great grandparents: 

Being a citizen of India at the time of, or at any time after the commencement of the Constitution i.e. 26.01.1950; or 

(a) Being eligible to become a citizen of India at the time of commencement of the Constitution i.e. 26.01.1950; or 

(b) Belonging to a territory that became part of India after 15th August, 1947. 

These could be: 

(i) Copy of the Indian Passport; or 

(ii) Copy of the Domicile Certificate issued by the Competent Authority; or 

(iii) Copy of Nativity Certificate from the competent authority; or 

(iv) PIO/ OCI card of parents/ spouse along with documents to prove Indian 

(v) Any other proof substantiating the request. Usually applicants are able to submit a certificate of residence or place of birth of self/ parents/ grandparents from First Class Magistrate/ District Magistrate (DM) of the concerned place. 

(4) Evidence of relationship as parent/ grandparent/ great grandparent, if their Indian origin is claimed as basis for registration as OCI Cardholder: 

(a) The document of relationship could be “Birth Certificate” issued from competent authority mentioning both parents’ name. In case the birth certificate is issued by a foreign authority, it is to be Apostled or endorsed by the concerned Indian Mission abroad/ concerned foreign Mission in India. 

Note : If the parents are divorced, court order of dissolution of marriage, which specifically mentions that the legal custody of the child is with the parent, who is applying for the OCI Card. If the court order is in any foreign language, translation in English or Hindi by authorized translator is to be enclosed. 

(b) Birth Certificate from Birth Registrar to be supported by (i) Education documents, if any and (ii) Documents of inherited landed property, if any. 

(c) Marriage Certificate of parents (If not available, reasons for same). 

(5) In case of minor child whose both parents are citizens of India or one of parents is a citizen of India; 

(i) Copy of child’s Birth Certificate 

(ii) Marriage Certificate of parents (if no marriage certificate is available, reasons for same to be indicated) 

(iii) Copy of Indian passport of the parents / one of the parents or copy of the Domicile Certificate or Nativity Certificate issued by the Competent Authority in respect of the parents/ one of the parents or any other proof substantiating the status of the parents/ one of the parents as being Indian citizen(s). 

(iv) If the parents are divorced, court order of dissolution of marriage, which specifically mentions that the legal custody of the child is with the parent who is applying for the OCI Card. If the court order is in any foreign language, translation in English or Hindi by authorized translator is to be enclosed. 

(6) Evidence as spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India or spouse of foreign origin of an OCI Cardholder: 

(i) Registered Marriage Certificate; and 

(ii) In the case of spouse of an Indian citizen - copy of the Indian Passport of the spouse or copy of the Domicile Certificate or Nativity Certificate issued by the Competent Authority in respect of the Indian spouse or any other proof substantiating the status of the spouse as being an Indian citizen. 

(iii) In the case of spouse of an OCI Cardholder - Copy of the present valid Passport of the spouse and copy of the OCI Card of the spouse and copies of the documents upon which the OCI Card was issued to the spouse. 

(iv) Declaration from the Indian/ OCI Cardholder spouse stating that in case of divorce/ separation/ death of foreign spouse, it is his/ her responsibility to surrender the OCI Card to the Government of India. 

Note: In all cases where the Marriage Certificate is to be submitted, the following guidelines will be applicable: 

(i) If the marriage is solemnized in India, Marriage certificate issued by Marriage Registrar is required. 

(ii) If the marriage is solemnized in foreign country, it should be apostled/ certified by the concerned India*. Mission/ Post. 

(iii) If the Marriage Certificate is in any foreign language other than English, it should be translated in English by authorized translator. 

Note: Only one living spouse duly fulfilling the conditions laid down in clause (d) of sub-section (1) of section 7 A of The Citizenship Act, 1955 shall be registered as an Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder. 

Photograph 

15. Photograph to be uploaded on the application should be of square shape of size not less than 51x 51 mm (with 80% coverage of face). It should have plain light color background (not white) without the border with front view of person’s head and shoulders showing the full face in middle of the photograph. The height and width of the applicant photo must be equal. The minimum dimensions are 200 pixels (width) x 200 pixels (height). The maximum dimensions are 900 pixels (width) x 900 pixels (height). The images of the photograph and signature must be in JPEG/ JPG format with max size 200 KB. 

Note: Photographs that do not conform to the above standards will be rejected and may cause delay in processing the applications 

Visiting the Embassy for submission of documents

16. After submission of the complete application online including documents, photograph and signature, the applicants are required to bring only the originals of the supporting documents to the Embassy for prior verification. They are not required to bring hard copies/ printouts of the application or the photocopies of the uploaded documents.

17. The originals of the documents are to be submitted to the Embassy. If there is any deficiency in the application/ uploaded document/ photograph, the Embassy will inform the same to the applicant by email. The applicant may then submit the required documents to the Embassy which will take necessary action to upload the same on the online system.

18. After verification of the documents with the originals and confirming that the application along with all the documents submitted are in order, the Embassy will acknowledge the receipt of the application on the online system and simultaneously an auto email will be sent to the applicant informing “Application received and is under process”. Thereafter, the originals of the supporting documents will be returned to the applicant.

19. There will be a mandatory verification step of personal interview (either physical or through video conference) of all OCI applicants who apply for registration as an OCI Cardholder under section 7A(1)(d) of The Citizenship Act, 1955 (i.e. spouse basis). This personal interview shall be conducted by the Indian Mission/ Post/ FRRO concerned at the time of document verification stage itself and the OCI application on spouse basis shall be acknowledged on the online system only after the personal interview has been held. In other cases, there will be no personal interview.

Collection of OCI Card

20. After grant, a registration certificate in the form of a booklet will be issued. It is printed in India. For collection of the OCI Cardholder registration booklet, the applicant is required to be present at the Embassy in person or he/she can send a duly authorized person, along with his/her passport for this purpose. However, the condition is that the applicant should be physically present in the country of issuance of OCI Cardholder registration booklet when it is collected through an authorized person.

Revised guidelines for re-issuance of OCI cards due to issuance of new foreign passport 

21. Following are the revised guidelines for Re-issuance of OCI cards due to issuance of new foreign passport to OCI cardholders:

  1. Mandatory requirement of re-issuance of an OCI card each time a new passport is issued to a foreigner up to 20 years of age and once after completing 50 years of age is dispensed with. 

  1. OCI cardholder is required to get the OCI card re-issued only once when a new passport is issued after completing 20 years of age. 

  1. OCI cardholder is required  to upload  ONLINE a copy of the new passport and a latest photo each time a new passport is issued upto 20 years of age and once after completing 50 years of age.  The uploading of these documents may be done within three months of receipt of the new passport.  The service will be provided on Gratis basis (free of charge).  

  1. Foreign Spouse of an Indian Citizen or spouse of foreign origin of an OCI cardholder are required to upload a copy of the new passport and also a latest photo ONLINE each time a new passport is issued along with a declaration on subsisting of marriage, copy of the Indian passport of the Indian spouse/passport & OCI card of the OCI cardholder spouse. Necessary changes to upload documents in the OCI portal to facilitate above services to OCI cardholders will be done soon.

PIO Cards/Conversion of PIO card to OCI Card

22. It has been decided that the Bureau of Immigration (BOI) will accept Person of Indian Origin (PIO) Cards as valid travel document till 31st December, 2024 along with valid foreign passport. The Indian Immigration Check Post(s) will continue to consider all PIO Cards valid for exit/entry into India till 31st December, 2024.

23. This extension of timeline is subject to the condition that if in the meantime, any deadline is notified by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) thereby making handwritten PIO Cards invalid, then PIO cardholders may have to obtain appropriate visa from Indian Mission/Posts.

24. All PIO cardholders with valid PIO cards are advised to apply for conversion of PIO card to OCI card at the earliest opportunity to minimize difficulties during travel.

25. In cases where the applicant for Renunciation of Citizenship cannot pay the applicable fee of Rs. 8,000/- through the portal  due to technical issues, he or she can pay a combined fee of KGS 8,570/- towards renunciation of Citizenship U/S 8(1) of the Citizenship Act plus KGS 2240/- towards Surrender of passport plus KGS 180/- towards ICWF. In case where the applicant is able to pay the applicable fee of Rs. 8000/- for Renunciation of Citizenship through the portal, the applicable fee of KGS 2240/- for the Surrender of Passport plus KGS 180/- towards ICWF fee only need to be paid.  Fee for Renunciation of Citizenship is KGS 8570/- plus KGS 2240/-  (fee for Surrender of Passport) plus KGS 180/- (ICWF fee). Total fee is KGS 10,990/-.

Fee for OCI Services

The fee for the following OCI services with effect from 1 April, 2024 are as under: -

Sl. No

Passport/ Special travel document/ misc services/ passport in lieu of lost, damaged or stolen

Fees in KGS

Including ICWF

w.e.f 01 April, 2024

1.

New OCI Card

24620+270=24890

2.

Issuance of duplicate OCI Card in case of loss/damage

8960+270=9230

3.

Conversion from PIO to OCI

8960+270=9230

4.

Other (OCI) Miscellaneous services

2240+270=2510

5.

Surrender of Passport

2420

For FAQs on OCI Miscellaneous Services, kindly visit https://www.mha.gov.in/sites/default/files/OCIcardholder_FAQs_16072021_1.pdf





****