Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) FAQ Consular Services

Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) FAQ

FAQ

  • Who can apply for OCI?
  • who is a citizen of another country, but was a citizen of India at the time of, or at any time after, the commencement of the Constitution; OR
  • who is a citizen of another country, but was eligible to become a citizen of India at the time of the commencement of the Constitution; OR
  • who is a citizen of another country, but belonged to a territory that became part of India after the 15th day of August, 1947; OR
  • who is a child or a grand-child or a great grandchild of such a citizen; OR
  • a person, who is a minor child of a person mentioned in the above 4 criterion; OR
  • a person, who is a minor child, and whose both parents are citizens of India; OR
  • a person, who is a minor child, and whose one of the parents is a citizen of India; OR
  • Spouse of foreign origin of an Overseas Citizen of India cardholder registered under section 7A 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 under this section.

Exceptions: OCI is not granted to any citizen who is / was and / or if their parents, grandparents or great grandparents are / were citizens 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 Overseas Citizen of India cardholder.

  • What are the Benefits for an OCI card holder:

An OCI card holder gets the following benefits:

  • A multiple entry, multi-purpose life-long visa for visiting India.
  • Exemption from registration with local police authority for any length of stay in India.
  • Parity with Non-resident Indians (NRIs) in respect of economic, financial and educational fields, except in relation to acquisition of agricultural or plantation properties.
  • OCI can be used as identity proof for application of PAN Card and driving   license as well as for opening a bank account if the OCI card holder is residing in India.
  • What benefits an OCI Card holder is not entitled to:

The OCI Card holder is not entitled:

  • to vote,
  • to be a member of a Legislative Assembly or of a Legislative Council or of the Parliament of India,
  • To hold Indian constitutional posts such as that of the President, Vice President, Judge of the Supreme Court or High Court etc.
  • He/she cannot normally hold employment in the Government
  • Can foreign nationals, who are not otherwise eligible for OCI, get OCI if they are married to persons who are eligible for OCI?

The spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India or spouse of foreign origin of an Overseas Citizen of India cardholder registered under section 7A 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.

  • Are Minor (below 18 years of age) children eligible for OCI Card?

Minor children whose both parents are citizens of India or one of the parents is a citizen of India are also eligible for OCI Card.

  • Is it mandatory to have a Life Long Visa Sticker (OCI) in the foreign Passport?

No, the life Long Visa Sticker process has been discontinued by Government of India. Applicants are required to carry Valid OCI Card with current foreign passport (endorsed on the OCI Booklet).

  • Is an applicant who had held nationality of Pakistan or Bangladesh, eligible for OCI?

No, if the applicant has ever been a citizen of Pakistan or Bangladesh, he / she will not be eligible for OCI.

  • Can a person renounce OCI?

Yes. He/she has to declare their intention of renunciation in Form XXII to the Indian Mission/Post where OCI registration was granted. After receipt of the declaration, the Indian Mission/Post shall issue an acknowledgement in Form XXII A. A separate application form is available for this purpose.

  • Do I have to fill all columns when filling up the application online?

Yes. It is mandatory that no column is left unanswered.

  • Is there an emergency service for OCI?

No.  In case of emergency, please apply for visa.

  • What is the processing time of application? 

4-6 weeks if the application has been submitted accurately, any incomplete application submitted may result in additional processing time.

  • Facing problems relating to access to online registration for fresh application or transfer through miscellaneous registration. What should I do?

Please read all instructions contained in Ministry of Home Affairs Website: https://ociservices.gov.in/

  • Can OCI applications be made in India?

Yes. Any applicant wishing to apply in India may see guidelines available on Ministry of Home Affairs website: https://ociservices.gov.in/

  • Whether civil Govt. servant working in Ministry of Defence as IT engineers/civil contractors entitled for OCI?

No. Such applicants are not eligible.

  • Can OCI card holder do Journalistic, Filming of Documentary, Missionary, Mountaineering and Research work in India?

No. An OCI card holder is not automatically entitled to undertake any Journalistic, Filming of Documentary, Missionary, Mountaineering and Research work in India. They need prior approval from the concerned Department/Ministry of the Government of India for these.