I. e-VISA

1 Eligibility

e-Visa is granted to a foreigner whose sole objective of visiting India is recreation, sight seeing, casual visit to meet friends or relatives, attending a short term yoga programme, medical treatment including treatment under Indian systems of medicine and business purpose and no other purpose/ activity. This facility shall not be available if the person or either of his / her parents or grand parents (paternal or maternal) was born in, or was permanently resident in Pakistan. e-Visa facility shall not be available to holders of Diplomatic/Official passports, UNLP (UN Passport) holders and international travel document holders e.g. INTERPOL officials. List of countries whose nationals are presently eligible for e-visa is given in Appendix I.

2 Procedure for applying for e-Visa

The foreign national may fill in the application online on the website https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html . The applicant can apply 120 days in advance prior to expected date of arrival in India.

3 Sub-categories of e-Visa

There are three sub-categories of e-Visa i.e. (a) e-Tourist Visa : For recreation, sightseeing, casual visit to meet friends or relatives, and attending a short term yoga programme, (b)e-Business Visa : For all activities permitted under normal Business Visa and (c) e-Medical Visa : For medical treatment, including treatment under Indian systems of medicine. A foreign national will also be permitted to club these activities provided he/she had clearly indicated the same in the application form along with requisite documents.

4 Entry points

Persons holding e-Visa are allowed to enter into India only through the designated international airports namely, (1) Delhi (2) Mumbai (3) Chennai (4) Kolkata (5) Trivandrum (6) Bangalore (7) Hyderabad (8) Cochin (9) Goa (10) Ahmedabad (11) Amritsar (12) Gaya (13) Jaipur (14) Lucknow (15) Trichy (16) Varanasi (17) Calicut (18) Mangalore (19) Pune (20) Nagpur (21) Coimbatore (22) Bagdogra (23) Guwahati , (24) Chandigarh and (25) Visakhapatnam.

Further, e-visa facility is also provided for entry at 5 major Indian seaports i.e. (1) Mumbai (2) Cochin (3) Mormugao (4) Chennai and (5) New Mangalore for cruise tourists.

Persons holding e-Visa can depart from any of the authorized Immigration Check Posts in India.

5 Validity

e-visa will be granted for a period up to 60 days with double entry on e-Tourist Visa and e-Business Visa and triple entry on e-Medical Visa. In the case of e-Medical Visa, extension may be granted up to 6 months on case to case basis on merits of each case by the FRRO/ FRO concerned.

6 Conditions for e-Visa

e-Visa shall be non-extendable except in the case of e-Medical Visa as mentioned in para 5 above. e-visa is also non-convertible except in specific cases. Regarding conversion of e-visa to other categories of visa, please see the general policy guidelines relating to Indian visa on this website.

7 Fee for e-Visa

Fee for e-Visa for nationals of various countries will be fixed by the Government from time to time.

8 Repeat visits

e-Visa will be allowed for a maximum of two times in a calendar year to a foreigner.

II. VISA-ON-ARRIVAL

9 Eligibility

Visa-on-Arrival is granted to a Japanese national who is visiting India for business, tourism, conference and medical purposes. This facility shall not be available to the citizens of Japan if the person or either of his / her parents or grandparents (paternal or maternal) was born in, or was permanently resident in Pakistan. This facility shall not be available to holders of Diplomatic/Official passports and UN Passport holders having Japanese nationality.

10 Procedure for applying for Visa-on-Arrival

Japanese nationals would be required to fill an application form and approach the “Visa Counter” at the designated airport on arrival. After checking the eligibility criteria and payment of fee, the Immigration officer would then stamp Visa-on-Arrival on the passport.

11 Entry points

Visa-on-Arrival is provided to Japanese nationals only at 6 designated international airports namely, Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore and Hyderabad.

12 Validity

The Immigration officer may grant a double entry Visa-on-Arrival valid up to 60 days to the citizens of Japan.

13 Conditions for Visa-on-Arrival

Visa-on-Arrival shall be non-extendable and non-convertible to any other type of visa except in specific cases. Regarding conversion of Visa-on-Arrival to other categories of visa, please see the general policy guidelines relating to Indian visa on this website.

14 Fee for Visa-on-Arrival

A fee of Rs 2000/- or equivalent in foreign currency per passenger (including children), will be charged from each Japanese national.

III. TRANSIT VISA

15 Eligibility and other conditions

A transit visa is granted to a foreigner for the sole purpose of enabling him/ her to travel through India to a destination outside India. A person who desires to make two entries into India in transit in the course of the same journey can be granted a transit visa valid for two entries and for stay in transit for a period not exceeding 3 days for each journey.

16 Validity

A transit visa will ordinarily be valid for a single journey and for entry within 15 days from the date of issue. If the journey is not performed within this period, a fresh transit visa will be required. A transit visa is only valid for direct transit, which cannot be more than 3 days for each visit. This period is not extendable except in case of extreme emergency like strike, traffic disruption, inclement weather, illness, etc.

17 Persons in direct transit through India

A transit visa is not required by a foreigner passing through, in direct transit by air, and travelling onward through India, provided he/she does not leave the specified precincts of the airport. A transit visa is not required by a foreigner who does not leave the ship while it halts at an Indian port.

IV. TOURIST VISA

18 Eligibility

A Tourist visa is granted to a foreigner whose sole objective of visiting India is recreation, sight seeing, casual visit to meet friends or relatives, attending a short term yoga programme, short duration medical treatment including treatment under Indian systems of medicine etc. and no other purpose/ activity. [Short term yoga programme means a yoga programme not exceeding 6 months duration and not issued with a qualifying certificate/ diploma etc.]

19 Validity

Validity of a tourist visa will be as specified below:

(i) Multiple entry Tourist Visa may be granted for a period of 10 years to the nationals of USA, Canada and Japan with a stipulation that “continuous stay during each visit shall not exceed 180 days and registration not required”.

(ii) In respect of nationals of other countries (except for nationals of 33 countries mentioned below), Multiple entry Tourist Visa may be granted for a period of 5 years as a default option. Grant of 5-year Tourist Visa will be with the stipulation “Continuous stay during each visit shall not exceed 90 days and registration not required”. However, in the case of nationals of UK, continuous stay during each visit shall not exceed 180 days.

(iii) In respect of nationals of 30 countries i.e. (1) Iran, (2) Egypt, (3) Libya, (4) Qatar, (5) Iraq, (6) Syria, (7) Sudan, (8) Tunisia, (9) Kuwait, (10)Yemen, (11) Algeria, (12)Bahrain, (13) Turkey, (14) Morocco, (15) Kyrgyzstan, (16) Turkmenistan, (17) Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea), (18) Lebanon, (19) Afghanistan, (20) Saudi Arabia, (21) Uganda, (22) Congo, (23) Ethiopia, (24) Nigeria, (25) Belarus, (26) Somalia, (27) South Sudan, (28) Kazakhstan, (29) Uzbekistan and (30) Sri Lanka, duration of visa will be decided by the concerned Indian Missions! Posts subject to a maximum of 5 years with the stipulation “continous stay during each visit shall not exceed 90 days and registration not required”.

(iv) In respect of nationals of Bangladesh and China, provisions as available in the bilateral agreements! policy guidelines, as issued from time to time, will be applicable.

(v) Tourist visa is not available to Pakistan nationals.

(vi) In the case of foreign nationals of Pakistan origin, Tourist Visa will be granted for a
period of 3 months with single entry.

20 Conditions of Tourist Visa

Tourist Visa shall be non-extendable and non-convertible to any other type of visa except in specific cases. Regarding conversion of Tourist Visa to other categories of visa, please see the general policy guidelines relating to Indian visa on this website.

21 Repeat visits

There shall be a gap of at least 2 (two) months between two visits to India on a Tourist Visa in respect of nationals of Afghanistan, China, Iraq, Sudan, foreigners of Pakistan origin and Stateless persons. In case any foreign national falling in this category and who has not been issued a 5-year Tourist Visa at the discretion of the Mission is required to visit India again within a period of 2 months after his!her last departure due to any exigent situation, such foreign national may be granted a fresh Tourist Visa. The applicant should furnish an undertaking on the following lines:-

(a) That the purpose of his!her visit is because of an emergent situation.

(b) That he/she is not engaged in Business activities, nor in Employment or pursuing studies!research etc. in India.

22 Group Tourist Visa

Foreign tourists travelling in groups of not less than four members, under the auspices of a recognized travel agency can be granted Group Tourist visa for group tourism in India. The Group Tourist Visa will be granted only on the online mode under the IVFRT. In order to avail of this facility, the travel agency concerned shall mandatorily fill in the applications online on website www.indianvisaonline.gov.in. The Mission! Post concerned will issue Group Tourist Visa (T- 2) after necessary checks.

V. MEDICAL VISA

23 Eligibility and other conditions

A medical visa (MED Visa) is granted to a foreigner whose sole purpose is to seek medical treatment in established!recognized!specialized hospitals!treatment centres in India. In case the foreign national desires to avail of treatment under the Indian systems of medicine, his!her case will also be considered.

Hospital Authorities must share the documents issued by them e.g. medical invitation letter, appointment letter etc. as per the format given in Appendix II on the official email ID of concerned Indian Mission! Post. Further, the hospital authorities should also provide letter to the foreign nationals (patients! attendants) for extension of visa and registration in the formats given in Appendix III and Appendix IV respectively for submission to the FRRO! FRO concerned.

24 Validity of visa and extension of visa (in respect of all foreign nationals other than Pakistan  and Bangladesh nationals)

The initial period of validity of Medical Visa (MED Visa)!Medical Attendant Visa (MED X Visa) may be up to a period of one year or the period of treatment, whichever is less. The Indian Missions! Posts abroad may, however, grant a Medical Visa of 6 (six) months validity with triple entry as a default option to all foreign nationals other than the nationals of 33 countries mentioned in para 19 (iii), (iv) & (v) above.

Medical Visa can be extended for a further period up to one year by the FRRO !FRO concerned on production of medical certificate from a Government! ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research)! NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals & Healthcare Providers)! MCI (Medical Council of India)! CGHS (Central Government Health Scheme) recognized hospital. Any further extension will be granted only by the Ministry of Home Affairs.

In the case of Pakistani and Bangladeshi nationals, visa validity, extension of visa and number of entries permitted etc. will be governed by specific provisions. Please see ‘Visa to Pakistani nationals’ and ‘Visa to Bangladeshi nationals’ on this website.

25 Visa to attendant/ family members

(i) Attendants! family members of the patient coming to India for medical treatment may be granted Medical Attendant visa (MED X visa) co-terminus with the ‘Med Visa’ of the patient. However, minor children accompanying a parent, who has come for medical treatment on a Medical Visa, may be granted ‘X-Misc.’ visa co-terminus with the Medical Visa of the principal visa holder.

(ii) In the case of foreign nationals other than Pakistan and Bangladesh nationals, not more than two persons (attendant or family member) may be allowed at a time for the grant of ‘MED X’ In the case of Pakistan nationals, only one attendant will be allowed. In the case of Bangladesh nationals, three attendants may be allowed.

26 Registration

(i) Foreign nationals (other than Pakistan nationals) holding Medical! Medical Attendant Visa for a period exceeding 180 days will be required to get themselves registered with the FRRO! FRO concerned within 14 days of arrival in India.

(ii) If the Medical ! Medical Attendant Visa is valid for a period of 180 days or less, no registration would be required.

(iii) Pakistan nationals holding a Medical Visa will be required to register themselves with the FRRO! FRO concerned within 7 days of arrival in India, irrespective of the duration of the visa.

(iv) Pakistan nationals holding a Medical Attendant Visa will be required to register themselves with the FRRO! FRO concerned within 24 hours of arrival in India, irrespective of the duration of the visa.

27 Obligation on Hospitals/ hospital administrators

Hotel keepers and others are required to submit details of the foreigners who have been provided with lodging! sleeping facility in their premises in the prescribed form “C” (Appendix – V). Hospitals! hospital administrators should write ‘hospital’ and ‘hospital administrators’ in place of ‘ hotel’ and ‘hotel managers’ in this form.

VI. EMPLOYMENT VISA

28 Eligibility conditions

An Employment visa is granted to a foreigner who is a highly skilled and!or qualified professional. Employment Visa shall not be granted – (i) for jobs for which qualified Indians are available and (ii) for routine, ordinary or secretarial!clerical jobs. Employment visa is not granted to a citizen of Pakistan.

The foreign national being sponsored for an employment visa in any sector should draw a gross salary in excess of Rs. 16.25 lakhs per annum. However, this condition of annual floor limit on income will not apply to : (a) Ethnic cooks employed by foreign Missions in India (this will not apply to ethnic cooks employed in commercial venture), (b) Language teachers ( other than English language teachers) ! translators (this will not include teachers employed to teach particular subjects in foreign language), (c) staff working for the concerned Embassy! High Commission in India, (d) foreigners, eligible for ‘E’ visa for honorary work with the NGOs registered in the country without salary, (e) foreign teaching faculty employed in the South Asian University and the Nalanda University, and (f) Circus artists.

The salary threshold limit of Rs. 16.25 lakhs per annum will be worked out taking into account the salary and all other allowances paid to the foreign national in cash and also perquisites like rent free accommodation etc. which are included in the salary for the purpose of calculating income tax. Such perquisites should be quantified and indicated in the Employment Contract.

In respect of foreign nationals engaged as teaching faculty at the level of Assistant Professors and above by the Central Higher Educational Institutions viz. Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), Central Universities (CUs), National Institutes of Technology (NITs), Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISERs), the minimum salary limit for grant of Employment visa will be Rs.9. 10 lakhs per annum.

Nationals of Bangladesh, who are married to Indian nationals and who are not eligible for registration as OCI cardholder must draw a minimum salary of Rs. 9.10 lakhs per annum for being eligible for grant of Employment Visa.

Note:

(i) In case of foreign nationals coming on Employment visa for a period of less than one
year, the minimum salary requirement will be worked out on pro-rata basis.

(ii) Foreigners employed in BPO! ITES are not eligible for exemption from annual threshold
income limit.

29 Other foreign nationals eligible for Employment visa

(a) Foreign nationals coming to India as consultant on contract for whom the Indian company pays a fixed remuneration (this may not be in the form of a monthly salary).

(b) Foreign artistes engaged to conduct regular performances for the duration of the employment contract given by Hotels, Clubs, other organizations.

(c) Foreign nationals who are coming to India to take up employment as coaches of national / state level teams or reputed sports clubs

(d) Foreign sportsmen who are given contract for a specified period by the Indian Clubs/ organizations (This will not include foreign nationals who are engaged in commercial sports events in India on contract (including coaches), for whom appropriate visa would be B-Sports visa).

(e) Self-employed foreign nationals coming to India for providing engineering, medical, accounting, legal or such other highly skilled services in their capacity as independent consultants provided the provision of such services by foreign nationals is permitted under law.

(f) Foreign language teachers/ interpreters.

(g) Foreign specialist Chefs (For Foreign Specialist Chefs employed in commercial venture, the minimum salary criteria of Rs.1 6.25 lakhs per annum will be applicable).

(h) Foreign Circus Artists

(i) Foreign engineers/ technicians coming to India for installation and commissioning of equipment / machines / tools in terms of the contract for supply of such equipment / machines / tools.

(j) Foreign nationals deputed for providing technical support/services, transfer of know-how/services for which the Indian company pays fees/royalty to the foreign company.

(k) Foreign journalists, who intend to travel to India to work in Indian media organizations.

(l) Employees / Managers coming to India for non journalistic activities within media

30 Duration of Employment Visa! Registration requirements ! extension of Employment Visa  (Other than Japanese nationals)

(a) Duration of Employment Visa

Category Duration of Employment Visa
(i) A foreign technician/expert coming to India in pursuance of a bilateral agreement between the Government of India and the foreign government, or in pursuance of a collaboration agreement that has been approved by the Government of India Duration of the agreement or for a period of five years, whichever is less, with multiple entry facilities
(ii) Highly skilled foreign personnel being employed in the IT software and IT enabled sectors Up to three years or term of assignment, whichever is less, with multiple entry facilities
(iii) Foreigner coming for employment not covered in (i) or (ii) above Up to 2 (two) years or the term of assignment, whichever is less, with multiple entry facility

(b) Registration : If the Employment visa is valid for a period of more than 180 days, the foreign national concerned should register with the FRRO/FRO concerned within 14 days of In the case of Employment Visa issued for a period of 180 days or less, registration is not required with FRRO/FRO.

(c) Extension of Employment Visa :The Employment visa may be extended by the FRRO / FRO concerned beyond the initial visa validity period, up to a total period of 5 years from the date of issue of the initial Employment Visa, on an year to year basis.

31 Specific provisions relatin2 to the 2rant of Employment visa to Japanese nationals
(a) Duration of Employment Visa

Category Duration of Employment Visa
(i) Japanese technicians or experts coming to India in pursuance of bilateral arrangements between the Government of India and the Government of Japan or in pursuance of arrangements between non-governmental organizations that have been approved by the Government of India. Duration stated in the arrangement or for a period of five years, whichever is less, with multiple entry facilities
(ii) Japanese applicants who are not covered under (i) above but are highly skilled and qualified professionals employed by a company, organization or industry in the IT software and IT enabled sectors in India. Three years with multiple entry facility
(iii) Japanese applicants who are highly skilled and qualified professional coming to India for employment by a company, organization or industry in India or engaged in an undertaking in India on contract not covered in (i) and (ii) above. Three years with multiple entry facility

 

(b) An extension of the period of stay for 2 more years beyond the initial 3 years may be granted to those Japanese applicants who entered India with visa mentioned in (ii) above, in accordance with the procedures determined by the GOI. In respect of Japanese applicants covered by (iii) above, an extension of the period of stay for 2 more years on a year to year basis beyond the initial period of 3 years may be granted subject to provision of necessary documents.

(c) A multiple entry dependent visa may be issued to the family members (spouse and children who are dependent on the applicant and forming part of the same household) of the nationals of Japan mentioned in (a) above.

(d) Japanese nationals holding Employment (E) Visa and their dependents holding dependent Visa may be granted Residential Permit co-terminus with the validity of the Employment/ Dependent Visa as the case may be. Japanese nationals who are required to register with the FRRO/ FRO concerned need not be present in person in the FRRO/ FRO for initial registration or for subsequent extension of visa/ Residential Permit and this may be done through an authorized representative.

32 Employment visa for foreigners wishing to work with NGOs registered in India

A foreigner who wishes to come to India for honorary work (without salary) with NGOs registered in India may be granted multiple entry Employment [E-4’] Visa for one year initially. The foreigners eligible for honorary work with the NGOs may be paid an honorarium upto a ceiling of Rs. 10,000 per month. The visa may be extended by FRRO / FRO concerned for a total period of 5 years from the date of issue of the initial Employment Visa, on year to year basis.

33 Visa to family members of a foreigner granted Employment Visa

Family members / dependents of a foreigner who is granted `E’ visa may be granted dependent visa of appropriate sub-category. Its validity shall be co-terminus with the validity of the visa of the principal visa holder [or for such shorter period as may be considered necessary by the Indian Mission]. Such family members may also obtain Student/Research Visa etc. provided they are otherwise eligible for grant of such a visa. Dependent visa of the family members/ dependents of such foreign national can be extended by the FRRO/ FRO concerned for a total period of 5 years from the date of issue of the initial visa, co-terminus with the visa of the principal Visa holder.

34 Conversion of Employment Visa

Employment Visa will be non-convertible to any other type of visa except in specific cases. Regarding conversion of Employment visa to other categories of visa, please see the general policy guidelines relating to Indian visa on this website.

35 Conversion of ‘E-3X’ visas to ‘E’ visas of the spouse of an employee on intra-company transfer.

The conversion of ‘E-3X’ (Entry) visa of the spouse of an employee on intra-company transfer into Employment Visa may be permitted within the country , subject to the applicant fulfilling all the conditions laid down for grant of Employment Visa, with prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

36 Conversion of ‘X-2’ Visa of nationals of Bangladesh married to Indian nationals into Employment Visa.

X-2’ Visa of nationals of Bangladesh married to Indian nationals, but not entitled to registration as OCI cardholder, may be converted into Employment Visa, on application, by the Ministry of Home Affairs. He/ she must draw a minimum salary of Rs. 9.10 lakhs per annum. The period of such visa will be for one year and can be extended on an yearly basis (without any limit) by the FRRO /FRO concerned. Any change in the employer will be permitted only with the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs (Foreigners Division). If he/she discontinues the employment, his/her visa may be converted into ‘X-2’ Visa.

37 Change of Employer

No change of employer shall be permitted during the currency of the Employment Visa, except in cases of change of employment between a registered holding company, Joint Ventures & Consortiums and its subsidiaries and vice-versa or between subsidiaries of a registered holding company, Joint Ventures & Consortiums. Change of employment would be permitted at a senior level e.g. managerial or a senior executive position and/ or at a skilled position e.g. a technical expert. Prior permission of the Ministry of Home Affairs is required for change of employment.

VII PROJECT VISA

38 Eligibility

Project visa is granted to foreign nationals coming to India for execution of projects in the power and steel sectors, subject to the following conditions:-

(1) The Visa would be project specific. In no circumstances would the person be allowed to be engaged in another project either of the same company or of a different company.

(2) The period of visa would be initially for a period of one year or for the actual duration of the project! contract, whichever is less, with multiple-entry facility. The visa can be extended for another one year by the State Government! UT Administration concerned. Any further extension of visa can be granted only by the Ministry of Home Affairs.

(3) The Project Visa would be issued only for skilled!highly skilled persons. However, the Missions!Posts may grant visa for not more than two chefs and two interpreters.

(4) A person coming on Project Visa will not be allowed to take up employment in the same Indian company for a period of two years from the date of commissioning of the project.

(5) The Indian Company engaging the foreign national for executing the project ! contract would be responsible for the conduct of the foreign national during his!her stay in India and also for the departure of such foreign national upon expiry of visa.

(6) In case the project!contract site falls in the Protected!Restricted Area, the grant of PAP! RAP should be integrated with the grant of Project Visa. In all such cases, prior clearance of the Ministry of Home Affairs shall be obtained.

(7) The foreigner coming on Project Visa will have to register himself!herself with the FRRO!FRO concerned within 14 days of arrival if the validity of visa is for more than 180 days. If the validity of visa is for a period of 180 days or less, registration would not be required.

39 Sector specific ceilings

Sector-specific ceilings on the maximum number of Project Visas allowed for each project in Power and Steel sectors are given below:-

A. Power

(i) A block of two units may be considered as one project.

(ii) Where the main plant equipment ─Boiler, Turbine, Generator (BTG) ─and its subsystems are sourced from foreign Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), the maximum number of foreign personnel allowed may vary from 50 to 70.

(iii) For an Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) project, where the main plant and equipment, its sub-systems and full or part of the Balance of Plant (BOP) is sourced from foreign OEM, the maximum number of foreign personnel allowed may vary from 76 to 125. This would be for an EPC project consisting of two units of 660 MW and above with supercritical technology.

In case, the number of units is more than two in a project, the maximum number of foreign personnel allowed would be as indicated below:-

Additional unit (admissible to additional units resulting in project size exceeding 600 MW capacity) Where main plant
equipment (BTG) and itssub-systems are sourced
from foreign OEM
EPC project where main plant and equipment, its sub-systems and full or part of the Balance of Plant (BOP) is sourced from
foreign OEM
1st additional Unit 105 187
2nd additional Unit 122 219
3rd additional Unit   140 250
4th additional Unit 157 281

(Note: To qualify as a separate project for additional units at the same location, a gap of minimum one year in the date of award of contract shall be considered necessary between two such projects)

(iv) Wherever, for a project, Flue Gas Desulphurization System (FGD) is also sourced from a foreign supplier, an additional number of 25 foreign personnel is recommended. For a project with larger numbers of units (more than two), the additional number of foreign personnel would be as follows:

1st additional unit – 37

2nd additional unit – 44

3rd additional unit – 50

4th additional unit – 56

B. Steel

(i) In case of green field projects – 10% of the total skilled manpower deployed per million tonne capacity or 300 persons, whichever is lower.

(ii) For Brownfield projects – 5% of the total skilled manpower deployed per million tonne capacity or 150 persons, whichever is lower.

(iii) The total manpower requirements of the project should be determined at the stage of conceptualization of the project by the sponsoring authority with a flow chart.

(iv) Foreign manpower requirement beyond the above limits may be examined by a Standing Committee having members from Ministries concerned.

(v) For the purpose of determining the capacity of the unit, it should be the approved capacity as certified by the Ministry concerned of the Government of India in respect of PSUs. In respect of Private sector Steel units, the basis of capacity may be as per the financial disclosure statement of a Scheduled Bank or RBI-approved Non Banking Financial Company (NBFC) duly authenticated and certified.

(vi) For ongoing projects with contractual obligation, deployment of foreign personnel may exceed the guidelines based on examination by the Ministry of Labour & Employment on the merits of each case.

 VIII. BUSINESS VISA

 40 Eligibility

A Business visa is granted to a foreigner for the following purposes –

(i) Foreign nationals who wish to visit India to establish an industrial/business venture or to explore possibilities to set up an industrial/business venture, other than Proprietorship Firms and Partnership Firms, in India.

(ii) Foreign nationals coming to India to purchase/sell industrial products or commercial products or consumer durables.

(iii) Foreign nationals coming to India for technical meetings/discussions, attending Board meetings or general meetings for providing business services support.

(iv) Foreign nationals coming to India for recruitment of manpower.

(v) Foreign nationals who are partners in the business and/or functioning as Directors of the company.

(vi) Foreign nationals coming to India for consultations regarding exhibitions or for participation in exhibitions, trade fairs, business fairs etc.

(vii) Foreign buyers who come to transact business with suppliers/ potential suppliers at locations in India, to evaluate or monitor quality, give specifications, place orders, negotiate further supplies etc., relating to goods or services procured from India.

(viii) Foreign experts/specialists on a visit of short duration in connection with an ongoing project with the objective of monitoring the progress of the work, conducting meetings with Indian customers and/or to provide technical guidance.

(ix) Foreign nationals coming to India for pre-sales or post-sales activity not amounting to actual execution of any contract or project.

(x) Foreign trainees of multinational companies/corporate houses coming for in-house training in the regional hubs of the concerned company located in India.

(xi) Foreign nationals coming as tour conductors and travel agents and / or conducting business tours of foreigners or business relating to it, etc.

(xii) Foreign academicians/ experts coming under GIAN (Global Initiative for Academic Networks).

(xiii) Crew members of scheduled/ non-scheduled flights operated by scheduled airlines, non-scheduled and chartered flights operated by non-scheduled airlines and special flights.

(xiv) Foreign nationals intending to visit India to participate in cultural events/ activities with [Such foreign nationals intending to visit India to participate in cultural events/ activities for short duration without remuneration may be granted Entry (X-Misc.) Visa.]

(xv) Foreign nationals who are engaged in commercial sports events in India on contract (including coaches) like Indian Premier League, Indian Soccer League, etc. with remuneration. They may be granted ‘B-Sports’ Visa with multiple entry facility for appropriate period. Such a foreign national shall comply with all the statutory obligations like payment of taxes, etc.

41 Conditions for grant of Business Visa

(i) The foreign national should be a person of assured financial standing (sufficient proof of his! her financial standing and expertise in the field of intended business will be checked thoroughly while granting the visa).

(ii) The foreign national should not be visiting India for the business of money lending or for running a petty business or petty trade or for full time employment in India, etc.

(iii) The foreign national shall comply with all other requirements like payment of tax
liabilities etc.

42 Duration of Business Visa & other conditions

(A) Validity of Business visa will be as specified below:

(i) Business Visa may be granted with 10 years validity with multiple entry facility to the citizens of the United States of America or Canada or Japan or Untied Kingdom or South Africa. This visa shall be issued with the stipulation that “continuous stay during each visit shall not exceed 180 days and registration not required.”

(ii) In respect of nationals of other countries (except for nationals of 33 countries mentioned below), Multiple entry Business Visa may be granted for a period of 5 years as a default option. Grant of 5-year Tourist Visa will be with the stipulation “Continuous stay during each visit shall not exceed 180 days and registration not required”.

(iii) In respect of nationals of 30 countries i.e. (1) Iran, (2) Egypt, (3) Libya, (4) Qatar, (5) Iraq, (6) Syria, (7) Sudan, (8) Tunisia, (9) Kuwait, (10)Yemen, (11) Algeria, (12)Bahrain, (13) Turkey, (14) Morocco, (15) Kyrgyzstan, (16) Turkmenistan, (17) Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea), (18) Lebanon, (19) Afghanistan, (20) Saudi Arabia, (21) Uganda, (22) Congo, (23) Ethiopia, (24) Nigeria, (25) Belarus, (26) Somalia, (27) South Sudan, (28) Kazakhstan, (29) Uzbekistan and (30) Sri Lanka, duration of visa will be decided by the concerned Indian Missions! Posts subject to a maximum of 5 years with the stipulation “continous stay during each visit shall not exceed 180 days and registration not required”.

(iv) In respect of nationals of Bangladesh, China and Pakistan, provisions as available in the bilateral agreements! policy guidelines, as issued from time to time, will be applicable.

(B) In the case of urgent request, the Indian Missions! Posts may provide visa for business
travel within 48 hours of application.

43 Specific provisions relating to the grant of Business Visa to Chinese nationals.

Business visa may be granted to Chinese nationals under the following three broad categories:

(a) Missions/Posts abroad may grant 6 months multiple entry B-visa to Chinese nationals who can produce a letter of invitation from a ‘Recognized Indian Organization’ with the stipulation that the period of stay shall be less than 90 days on each visit. [‘Recognized Indian Organization’, referred to above means recognized chambers of commerce or industry associations or other trade bodies, public sector undertakings, government approved joint ventures, liaison offices or private sector companies who are members of a recognized chamber of commerce or industry association or other trade body.]

(b) The Missions/Posts abroad may grant 60 days single entry visa to Chinese nationals who cannot produce any invitation letter from a recognized Indian organization but produces a letter of request from a duly authorized Chinese [‘Duly authorized Chinese Organization’ referred to above means Ministries and Commissions of State Council, the Governments of all Provinces, Autonomous Regions and Municipalities directly under the Central Government, and Foreign Offices & Bureaus of Economy and Commerce thereunder and departments and units recognized by the Department of Consular Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China.]

(c) The Head of Mission/Head of Post may approve issuance of short term single entry B-visa to Chinese nationals not exceeding 60 days, who cannot produce any documentary proof referred at (a) and (b) above.

B-visa of Chinese nationals may be extended by FRRO / FRO concerned as follows:

(i) FRRO / FRO concerned may extend the 180 days B-visa up to one year with multiple entry visa facility, on a recommendation of the ‘Recognized Indian Organization’ and on being satisfied about the genuine and bonafide business activities.

(ii) FRRO / FRO concerned may, depending on a case-to-case basis and on merits, extend 60 days B-visa up to 180 days with multiple entry visa facility, on a recommendation from the ‘Recognized Indian Organization’ and on being satisfied about the genuine and bonafide business activities.

44 Registration

All Business Visa holders are required to register themselves with the FRRO/ FRO concerned in case the aggregate stay in India on Business Visa exceeds 180 days during a calendar year.

45 Other conditions

Business Visa shall be non-convertible to any other type of visa except in specific cases. Regarding conversion of Business Visa to other categories of visa, please see the general policy guidelines relating to Indian visa on this website.

 46 Grant of extension of stay to foreigners holding a Business visa

In case Business visa is granted for a period less than five years by the Indian Missions, the same can be extended up to a maximum period of five years subject to the gross sales/turnover from the business activities, for which the foreigner has been granted visa, is not less than Rs. 1 crore per annum (to be achieved within 2 years of setting up the business or date of initial grant of B visa, whichever is earlier) [This condition will be applicable in case of Business Visa covered under para 40 (i) above.] In other categories, visa extension shall be subject to submission of documents of proof of doing business/ consultancy. Extension of Business Visa may be granted by the FRRO /FRO concerned on year-to-year basis. The period of extension shall not be beyond five years from the date of issue of the Business visa.

47 Visa to family members of a foreigner granted Business visa

Family members/dependants of a foreigner who is granted `B’ visa shall be granted dependant visa of appropriate sub-category. Its validity shall be co-terminus with the validity of the visa of the principal visa holder or for such shorter period as may be considered necessary by the Indian Mission. Such family members may also be granted Student/ Research Visa, etc provided they are otherwise eligible for grant of such a visa.

48 Grant of India Business Card to Businessmen from SAARC countries

An India Business Card will be issued to businessmen from SAARC countries who are eligible for a multiple entry Business Visa for a period of three years or more. The validity of the India Business Card will be co-terminus with the validity of the Business Visa. The India Business Card will help in facilitation at the immigration counters for expeditious immigration clearance. The businessman issued such an India Business Card will also have to carry the passport containing the Business Visa sticker for entry into India. On issue of a fresh Business Visa, a fresh India Business Card will be issued. While submitting the application for a fresh Business Visa, the individual will have to surrender the India Business Card already issued.

49 Grant of Permanent Residency Status (PRS) to foreign investors

Permanent Residency Status (PRS) will be granted to foreign investors making investment under Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) route. This scheme will not be applicable to Pakistani citizens or third country nationals of Pakistani origin. To be eligible, the foreign investor should invest a minimum of Rs. 10 crores to be brought within 18 months or Rs.25 crores to be brought within 36 months. The foreign investment should result in generating employment to at least 20 resident Indians in every financial year. This scheme will be applicable to only foreign investors fulfilling the above mentioed eligibility conditions, his/ her spouse and dependents. Top management executives will not be covered by this scheme and they will have to come on normal Employment Visa.

The foreign investor promising investment as per the aforesaid threshold limit will be granted an initial business visa ‘B-4 Visa (Investor)’ for 18 months or 36 months, as the case may be (depending on the level of investment promised), without any stay stipulation. There will be no requirement of registration with FRRO / FRO concerned. Spouse and dependents of the investor will be granted ‘B-4X’ Visa co-terminus with the Business Visa of the investor on the same terms and conditions. After fulfillment of the eligibility conditions, the foreign investor and his/ her spouse/ dependents may submit an application for Permanent Residency Status (PRS) online to the FRRO/ FRO concerned.

PRS will be granted for a period of 10 years with multiple entry. This can be renewed for another 10 years. There will be no requirement of registration with the FRRO/ FRO concerned. Foreign investor holding PRS will be required to submit to the FRRO/ FRO concerned every year a copy of the Form FC-GPR, the Annual Return on Foreign Liabilities and Assets filed with RBI by the Indian company receiving FDI & the RBI’s acknowledgement letter to that effect and the Income Tax Return filed before the Income Tax Department so to ensure that he/she is fulfilling the conditions regarding investment. He/ she will also be required to submit to the FRRO/ FRO concerned every year details regarding employment generation for resident Indians based on self-certification by the statutory auditor of the Indian investee company.

If the PRS cardholder is staying in a Hotel or Lodge, it is mandatory for the hotel keepers/ others to submit Form ‘C’ (Appendix V) to the FRRO/ FRO concerned. PRS holder should inform change of address/ change of passport to the FRRO/ FRO concerned.

PRS will serve as a multiple entry visa without any stay stipulation. PRS holders will be allowed to purchase one residential property for dwelling purpose. Transfer of immovable property acquired by PRS holder under the PRS Scheme needs to comply with the provisions of FEMA Regulations. Spouse/ dependents of the investor who are granted PRS will be allowed to take up employment in private sector on the basis of the PRS with the permission of the FRRO/ FRO concerned. The minimum salary limit of Rs. 16.25 lakhs per annum prescribed for grant of Employment visa to foreign nationals will not be applicable in such cases. Spouse/ dependents of the investor who are granted PRS can undertake studies in India without a separate Student Visa. No specific permission will be required from FRRO/ FRO concerned for this purpose. However, prior to undertaking studies in India, they shall intimate concerned FRRO/ FRO about the details of the institution wherein they are seeking admission along with duration & subject of the course.

IX STUDENT AND RESEARCH VISA

50 Eligibility

A Student visa is granted to a foreigner whose sole objective is to pursue on-campus, full time (structured) courses (including English and other language courses and vocational education) at educational institutions (Central/ State Government Educational Institutions & Private Educational Institutions) duly recognized by statutory regulatory body and have acquired statutory authorization to conduct the course(s) complying with GST regulations. The foreigner should produce proof of admission to a full time course in a recognized educational institution in India. In case of admission in a medical or para-medical course, the foreigner should produce a letter of approval or a ” No Objection Certificate” from the Ministry of Health. The foreigner should be a person of assured financial standing (A letter of support from the parent/guardian accompanied by a bank guarantee/ certificate may be accepted for this purpose). The foreigners should also produce evidence of transfer of adequate funds for at least 4 months sustenance in India, or produces travelers cheques for a similar amount.

Note:

(1) No Student Visa will be issued to foreign nationals sponsored by franchise Educational Institutes running off-campus centres, Study Centres of Open Universities offering distance learning programmes, Educational Institutes running “outreach” programmes and offering courses without any statutory sanction from regulatory authorities.

(2) Student Visa will not be issued for pursuing ‘Short Term Courses’ in India which are not List of recognized courses under vocational education is available in the website of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) – www.aicte-india.org.

(3) Student Visa holders are required to open NRO account (Non Resident Ordinary) in India and the details of such NRO account is to be furnished to FRRO ! FRO concerned during registration ! visa extension, as proof of financial sustenance.

(4) Indian Missions! Posts shall obtain prior clearance of the Ministry of Home Affairs for issue of Protected Area Permit (PAP)! Restricted Area Permit (RAP) if the place of study falls within the Protected! Restricted Area.

(5) At the time of admission, the Educational Institutions shall inform the foreign student as to whether the said Educational Institution falls within the Protected! Restricted Area notified by the Government. In case, the Educational institution falls within the Protected! Restricted Area, the Educational Institution concerned shall advice the foreign student to obtain PAP! RAP from the Indian Mission! Post concerned while applying for Student Visa.

(6) Student visa may also be granted to foreigners for joining the following private Institutions for the duration of the course or for one year, whichever is less, and on the conditions prescribed: (1) NIIT, (2) APTECH, (3) Tata Infotech, (4) Software Technology Group , and (5) DSK Global Education & Research Limited, Pune

These institutions must be conducting course(s) at their own educational! institutional premises and not at franchise educational institute or off-campus centre.

51 Validity

Indian Missions! Posts may grant Student visa to nationals of all countries for a maximum period up to five years or for the duration of the academic course of study, whichever is less (excluding nationals of Pakistan and Bangladesh). The validity of Student Visa shall not exceed 5 years. A maximum of four entries per academic year may be allowed to foreign students. In emergency situations, additional entries may be granted by FRRO ! FRO concerned with prior permission obtained from the University!Educational institution. Grant of visa to nationals of Bangladesh and Pakistan will be governed by the procedure ! stipulations prescribed separately. Please see ‘Visa for Bangladeshi nationals’ and ‘Visa for Pakistani nationals’ on this website.

52 Conditions for student visa

The grant of student visa shall be subject to the following guidelines:

(i) A foreign student will be permitted to change his! her course for a maximum of three times during the currency of a Student Visa. In case of any further change in the course, the foreign national will have to obtain a fresh Student Visa from the Indian Mission! Post abroad.

(ii) There will be no restriction with reference to the number of courses a student wants to avail of in one institution or multiple institutions, provided the institutions are recognized.

(iii) In case a foreign student wants to change a course midway and join another course, the period of validity of visa will be counted from the initial date of issue of visa.

(iv) Every University and Educational Institution shall furnish to the FRRO! FRO concerned information in respect of foreign students enrolled in the University or the Educational Institution in Form A (Appendix – VI ) within the period mentioned therein.

(v) There may be a course requirement to complete industrial training! summer project !internship etc. which may be a part of the prescribed curriculum. No special permission is required for completion of such industrial training ! internship etc.

Note:

Change of institution shall be allowed if student has reasonable ground of insufficient infrastructure, paucity of facility, unavailability of the course of their choice or either of them.

53 Provisional Visa for Students

In case the applicant does not have a firm letter of admission from the university ! recognized college or educational institution, the Missions! Posts may grant a ‘Provisional Student Visa’ on the basis of provisional admission certificate ! letter of offer or advertisement for admission to foreign students issued by the University ! recognized college or educational institution in India. ‘Provisional Student Visa’ shall be valid for a period of six months which shall be extendable by the jurisdictional FRRO!FRO for a period up to six months on production of a copy of his! her application for admission to an educational institution and letter from the educational institution concerned confirming receipt of his! her application for admission. In case the Student gets regular admission in some University ! recognized ! reputed college or educational institution within the validity of the provisional visa, the FRRO ! FRO concerned is empowered to grant a regular ‘Student Visa’ for the duration of the course or for a period of five years, whichever is less. These provisions will not be applicable for ‘Theological Studies’.

54 Registration, renewal of residential permits, exit permit and transfer of
University/educational institution

(i) A foreign student arriving on a Provisional Student Visa!Student Visa may be allowed provisional registration by the FRRO!FRO concerned within 14 days from the date of arrival in India for nationals of all countries except Pakistan. In the case of Pakistan nationals, registration is to be done within 24 hours of arrival at the specified place of At the time of provisional registration, the foreign nationals should produce their valid passports and visas, bonafide student certificate from the educational institution concerned and provisional address issued by the Head of Department or Principal or the Director of the International Studies Centre of the University!educational institution concerned.

(ii) The final registration should be done within a period of 90 days from the date of arrival on production of a proof of permanent residence (which would include regular hostel accommodation).

(iii) Registration and renewal of residential permits will be done within one day after receipt of the application complete in all respects.

(iv) All requests for transfer of University or educational institution would be cleared within a period of 15 days in case of transfer of University ! educational institution within the jurisdiction of the same FRRO!FRO, and within 60 days in cases which involve transfer of University ! educational institution to another FRRO!FRO on production of original cancellation certificate issued by the existing University or educational institution and admission confirmation certificate issued by the new University or educational

(v) In case a foreigner on Student Visa discontinues his! her course of study abruptly and voluntarily seek ‘Exit’ from India, FRRO! FRO concerned is empowered to cancel his! her Student Visa without prejudice.

55 Extension of Student visa

Foreign students who fail to qualify a course within the prescribed course period may also be granted extension of visa for a maximum of three attempts beyond the original course period as long as the concerned University! Institution permits the student to complete the course. FRROs ! FROs are empowered to grant permission to change the course or educational institution ! extend ‘Student Visa’.

56 Theological studies

A student visa (S-8) may be granted for the duration of the course or for a period of one year, whichever is less, to foreigners who want to come to India for theological studies in the Universities!Institutions mentioned below:-

(1) Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh

(2) University of Kolkata, Kolkata

(3) Jamia Hamdard, Hamdard Nagar, New Delhi

(4) Jamia Milia Islamia, Jamia Nagar, New Delhi

(5) Osmania University, Hyderabad

(6) Gujarat University, Ahmedabad

(7) North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon

(8) University of Calicut, Calicut

(9) Kerala University, Thiruvananthapuram

(10) University of Mumbai, Mumba

(11) M.S. University of Baroda, Vadodara

Visa in all other cases (except for studies in institutions! universities mentioned above) for theological studies shall be granted only after obtaining prior clearance from the Ministry of Home Affairs.

57 Scholarship-holders and trainees

(a) Student visa (S-6) may be granted for the duration of the training or for a period of one year, whichever is less, to a foreign scholar or trainee coming to India under – (i) the Technical Co-operation Scheme of the Colombo Plan; (ii) any scholarship or exchange scheme sponsored by a Ministry of the Government of India; (iii) the sponsorship of an International Organization like UNESCO, WHO etc; , (iv) the combined auspices of the United States International Co-operation Administration and the local authorities and (v) internship as part of curriculum.

(b) A foreigner visiting India under various ITEC programs for training, including military training programs, may be granted a Student visa (S-6) for the entire duration of the course, irrespective of the type of passport they hold. A foreigner travelling on a private passport, if issued with a visa for more than 180 days, shall undergo registration formalities, as per rules.

(c) A foreigner coming to India for training upto three months, whose application is sponsored by the United Nations or its Specialised agencies, may be granted a Student visa (S-6) provided the Ministry concerned has approved the proposed training.

(d) Serving defence personnel from foreign countries coming to India as trainees to defence
training establishments may also be granted Student (S-6) visa.

58 Visa for Students , Faculty and Staff of the South Asian University (SAU) and Nalanda University

Students of the South Asian University and Nalanda University will be issued Student Visa (S-7) for the validity! duration of the pre-specified course! tenure with four entries per academic year. In emergency situations, additional entries may be granted by FRRO! FRO concerned with prior permission obtained from SAU ! Nalanda University. FRRO! FRO concerned may extend the visa, where required. The students coming on the above visa would have to register themselves within 14 days of their arrival in India, at the office of the concerned FRRO!FRO. Staff! faculty coming to join the South Asian University and Nalanda University will be granted Employment (E-5) Visa.

59 Special provisions relating to the grant of Student Visa to Chinese nationals

Mission! posts may grant Student visa to Chinese nationals under two broad categories –

(i) those who will be coming for studies under self finance, and

(ii) those who will be coming under cultural exchange programme or education exchange programme or other mutually approved programme.

A three months Student Visa may be granted by the Mission!Posts to Chinese nationals under the category mentioned in (i) above. All Chinese students granted S-visa will be required to register with FRRO! FRO concerned within 14 days after arrival in India.

Mission!Post abroad may grant Student Visa (S-6) for the full duration of the course to Students covered under the category mentioned in (ii) above on presentation of the recommendation of the concerned Government agency. They would be required to register within 14 days of arrival in India.

Student visa shall be extended for the first year by the Ministry of Home Affairs. Subsequent extensions up to the duration of the course with two entries every year may be granted by FRRO ! FRO concerned. In case there is change in institution!course! place of registration of a Chinese Student, FRRO ! FRO concerned may seek the approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

60 Specific provisions relating to the grant of Student visa to Japanese nationals

A multiple entry student visa may be granted to a Japanese national valid for up to five years, or the duration of the course, whichever is shorter, on presentation of a letter of confirmed admission from a recognized educational institution, proof of finances to cover travelling expenses and other expenditure in India. The Japanese applicant shall be required to register himself!herself with the concerned FRRO for a residence permit within 14 days of his or her arrival. There will be no restriction with reference to the number of courses a Japanese student wants to avail in one institution or multiple institutions, provided the institutions are recognized. In case a Japanese student wishes to change a course midway and join another course, the period of validity of the residence permit will be adjusted to the duration of the latter course. In the case of applicants covered under the Cultural Exchange Programme or the Education Exchange Programme or other mutually approved Programme, a Student visa (S-6) may be granted on presentation of a letter of authorization from the concerned Government body.

61 Research Visa

(i) A Research Visa is issued to a foreign research scholar for a period of 3 years or for the duration of the research project, whichever is earlier.

(ii) Research Visa may be extended by FRRO /FRO concerned. The total period of the Visa may be restricted to the duration of the project as approved by the Institute of Affiliation or five years, whichever is less. Such foreign scholars may, if required, also be given extension for a period of not more than six months as the last and final extension even after completion of the project.

(iii) Foreign Student Advisers, Administrative Officers or Registrars of educational institutions will report on the first working day of every quarter to the “concerned Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO)/ Foreigners Registration Office (FRO) concerned confirming that the foreign research scholars are studying in their institutions, and indicating any changes of residence.

(iv) Those foreign students who are already in India and who wish to pursue research programmes after completing their studies in India would also be dealt with in a similar The FRRO/ FRO concerned may convert a student visa into a research visa if the student can furnish documentary proof of admission in a research programme and of adequate financial resources.

(v) In cases which involve research on subjects related to the foreigner’s own country, the research scholar will be required to furnish a brief synopsis of the research proposal in about 150 words and giving full justification (including the benefit he/she would get) for doing the research in India.

(vi) OCI cardholders would require special permission to undertake research work in India. Such permission may be granted by the Indian Missions/ Posts abroad. In the case of OCI cardholders who are residing in India, the applications may be submitted to the FRRO/ FRO concerned who may grant such permission.

(vii) Change of subject or institution of affiliation on Research Visa will not be normally
allowed.

62 Visas for foreign professors, other teachers and scholars

For professors, teachers and scholars who are invited as visiting faculty, the powers to issue visa are delegated to India Missions/Posts abroad on the same lines as for the research scholar . The Indian Missions/Posts will be authorized to issue visa (R-2) based on an invitation from a Central educational institution or publicly funded State University.

63 Grant of Visa to the members of Botanical, Scientific, Anthropological etc. expeditions

An application for the grant of visa in such cases shall be referred to the Ministry of Home Affairs at least four months in advance with copy to the Ministry of External Affairs and the Ministry of Science & Technology. Members of such expeditions may be granted Research Visa (R-4). The members of the expedition may be required to take with them a liaison officer deputed by the agency concerned of the Government of India. Approval of the designated agency of the Government of India will also be necessary to take out of India any specimens etc. collected during the expedition as per such conditions as may be prescribed by the Ministry of Science & Technology and other agencies concerned. Such expeditions will NOT be permitted to visit any protected, restricted or tribal area without the specific prior permission of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

64 Study of yoga/ vedic culture / Indian systems of dance / music

Indian Missions!Posts may grant a Student visa (S-5) to persons coming for studying yoga, vedic culture, Indian systems of dance ! music etc., at the institutions approved by the Government of India and listed in Appendix VII for a period of 5 years! 3 years! 1 year as the case may be or for the duration of the course, whichever is less. He! she should produce proof that he!she has secured admission there for the proposed study. He! she should be properly sponsored by the institution that he! she proposes to join. Such Student Visa holders are required to open NRO account (Non Resident Ordinary) in India and the details of such NRO account is to be furnished to FRRO! FRO concerned during registration ! visa extension, as proof of financial sustenance.

The three year! one year visa can be further extended on a year to year basis for the duration of the course subject to a maximum period of up to five years from the date of issue of initial visa which may be granted by the FRRO!FRO concerned on the basis of due sponsorship by the Institution.

65 Visas for foreign nationals coming for Buddhist studies

(1) Indian Missions!Posts may grant a Student Visa (S-5) to a foreign national coming for Buddhist studies in any of the Institutions mentioned below up to a period of 5 years, or for the duration of the course, whichever is less:-

(i) Sera Je Secondary School, P.O. Bylakuppe, Mysore District, Karnataka.

(ii) Himalaya Buddhist Cultural School, P.O. Box 74, Village Rangri, P.O. Manali, District Kullu (H.P.)

(iii) Gyuto Tantric University (Ramoche Temple), P.O. Sidhbari, Dharamsala, District Kangra, H.P.

(iv) Sera Jey Monastic University for Advanced Buddhist Studies & Practice, Bylakuppe, Mysore District, Karnataka.

(v) Drepung Gomang Monastery, Mundgod, Karnataka.

(vi) Lower Tantric College, Hunsur, Karnataka.

(vii) Upper Tantric College (Gyuto), Sidhbari, Dharamsala, H.P.

(viii) Menriling Monastery, Solan, H.P.

(ix) Tibetan Medical and Astrological Institute, Dharamsala, H.P.

(x) Namdrolling Monastery, Bylakuppe , Karnataka.

(xi) Drikung Kagyu Jangchubling, Dehradun, Uttarakhand

(xii) Sakya Centre, Rajpur, U.P.

(xiii) College for Higher Tibetan Studies, Dharamsala, H.P.

(xiv) Central University for Tibetan Studies, Sarnath, Varanasi, U.P.

(xv) Tushita Meditation Center, Dharamkot, Himachal Pradesh

(xvi) Sera Mey Dratsang Cultural Society (R), Bylakuppe, Karnataka

(xvii) Sera Mey Monastic University, Bulakuppe, Karnataka

(xviii) Rinchen Choeling Nunnery Sakyapa Nunnery, Dehradun, Uttarakhand

(xix) Takten Phuntsok Choling Janan Monastery, Sanjouli, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh

(xx) Tsogyal Shedupling Nunnery Nyingmapa Nunnery, Bylakuppe, Karnataka

(xxi) Chodhe Tashi Lhunpo Monastery, Gelukpa Monastery, Bylakuppe, Karnataka

(xxii) Drepung Loseling Monastery Lama Camp No.2, Tibetan Colony, Mundgod, District Karwar, Karnataka

(xxiii) Garden Shartse Monastery Lama Camp No.1, Tibetan Colony, Mundgod, District Karwar, Karnataka

(xxiv) Garden Jangtse Monastery Lama Camp No.1, Tibetan Colony, Mundgod, District Karwar, Karnataka

(xxv) Library of Tibetan Works and Archives (LTWA), Gangchen Kyishong, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh

(xxvi) Institute of Buddhist Dialectics (IBD), Macleod Ganj, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh

(xxvii) Dolma Ling Nunnery (DLN), Sidhpur, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh

(2) In case Student Visa is granted by the Indian Mission/ Post for a period of less than 5 years, the visa can be extended by FRRO/ FRO concerned on year to year basis for a maximum period of 5 years from the date of issue of initial visa subject to due sponsorship by the Institution.

Grant of Student Visa in such cases will be, inter alia, subject to the fulfillment of the following conditions- (i) he/she produces proof that he/she has secured admission there for the proposed study; (iii) he/she is properly sponsored by the institution that he/she proposes to join. Such Student Visa holders are required to open NRO account (Non Resident Ordinary) in India and the details of such NRO account is to be furnished to FRROs/ FROs concerned during registration / visa extension, as proof of financial sustenance.

 66 Visa for dependents

(a) No dependent visa will be granted to parents/ other family members of a minor child below 18 years of age coming on Student Visa. However, parents/ other family members of such a minor child can be granted any other type of visa subject to their fulfilling the eligibility conditions for the same.

(b) In the case of a foreign national coming on Student visa for higher education (graduation and above) and on Research visa, spouse and minor children accompanying the foreign national may be granted dependent visa of appropriate sub-category. Its validity shall be co-terminus with the validity of the visa of the latter or for such shorter period as may be considered necessary by the Indian Mission/Post. Such family members may also obtain Student/ Research Visa, if required, subject to their fulfilling the conditions laid down for the grant of such visa.

(b) Dependent visa of spouse and minor children of a foreign national who is granted Student /Research visa may be extended by the FRRO/ FRO concerned beyond the initial validity period co-terminus with the visa of the principal visa holder subject to no adverse inputs against the said foreign national.

(c) Visa of dependents of foreign nationals coming on Employment, Business, Student, Research Visa etc. can be converted into Student/Research Visa within the country by the FRRO/ FRO concerned provided such dependents fulfill the conditions laid down for the grant of Student/Research Visa.

(d) ‘X’ (Entry) Visa of a foreigner who has been studying on Entry Visa can be converted to Student Visa by the FRRO/ FRO concerned on attaining the age of 16 years or after 12thStandard subject to fulfillment of the conditions for grant of Student Visa.

(e) ‘X’ (Entry) Visa of foreigners born to Indian nationals may be converted to Student Visa by the FRRO/ FRO concerned subject to verification of the PIO status.

(f) Regarding conversion of Student/ Research Visa to other categories of visa, please see
the general policy guidelines relating to Indian visa on this website.

X INTERN VISA

67 Eligibility

Intern [‘I’] Visa is granted to a foreigner intending to pursue internship in Indian companies, Educational Institutions and NGOs subject to the following conditions:-

(1) The period of visa shall be restricted to the duration of the internship programme or one year, whichever is less.

(2) Intern visa will be granted to a maximum of 50 interns per year for each Indian Mission/ This limit will be 100 per year for countries where the PIO (Person of Indian Origin) population is more than 1 million.

(3) The intern visa will be granted immediately after completion of graduation/ post graduation but the gap between the completion of graduation/ post graduation and the commencement of the internship should not be more than two years.

(4) Visa should be granted only on the basis of a letter from the Indian company! educational institution! NGO concerned sponsoring the foreign national for the internship programme and clearly indicating the period of internship.

(5) In case the internship is in a Company, the foreign national being sponsored for internship should draw a minimum remuneration of Rs. 7.80 lakhs per annum. There will be no minimum salary limit in the case of internship in Educational institutions and

(6) Intern visa will not be issued for internship in certain vital sectors like Defence, Telecom, Space Technologies, Construction! strategic Infrastructure projects, Mining, Civil Aviation, Petroleum & Natural Gas exploration, Private security agencies, Human Rights, Nuclear Energy, Environmental issues and Dams.

(7) Foreign nationals granted visa for doing internship will have to register themselves with the FRRO ! FRO concerned within 14 days of arrival in India if continuous stay is for more than 180 days.

(8) No Intern visa shall be granted to a national of Pakistan.

(9) The foreign national will have to exit the country before the expiry of the visa. An undertaking should be obtained from the company! organization concerned that they will ensure departure of the foreigner on completion of the internship.

(10) Under no circumstances, the foreign national will be allowed to take up employment in India immediately after completion of the internship programme.

(11) Earnings from internship of the foreign nationals with Indian companies! Educational Institutions! NGOs will be subject to the Indian Income Tax Regulations.

68 Intern visa to foreign nationals sponsored by AIESEC

Grant of visa to interns sponsored by Association Internationale des Etudiants en Sciences Economiques et Commerciales (AIESEC) for social or community work in NGOs and for project based work in companies! industries will also be governed by the above guidelines. In case a foreign national is in India on a Student visa and after completion of graduation! post graduation, the foreign national is offered internship on the sponsorship of AIESEC, FRRO! FRO concerned may convert the Student Visa to Intern Visa subject to fulfillment of the conditions mentioned above.

69 Visa for interns under the French International Internship Programme (VIE)

A foreigner visiting India under the French International Internship Programme (VIE) may be granted Intern Visa subject to the following conditions-

(i) The Intern visa for such interns would be granted for fresh graduates within one year of graduation.

(ii) The Intern visa issued for such interns shall be valid for a maximum period of 12 months, and be renewable once for a further maximum period of 12 months.

(iii) The Intern Visa would be issued to a maximum number of 250 interns per year

(iv) The consolidated salary! stipend of the interns being sponsored for the Intern visa should not be less than Rs.7.80 lakhs per annum ( US$ 12,000 per annum).

(v) The Intern Visa and its extension will be specific to the VIE scheme under which the intern is sent to India. The French Government agency in charge of the VIE scheme will apply for the visas, specifying the name of the intern, the hosting organization in India, and the exact period of stay.

(vi) The interns shall observe all registration formalities as per rules after their arrival in India.

70 Foreign nationals intending to work in Indian Media organizations or foreign Media organizations in India as interns, may also be issued “Intern Visa” under delegated powers of the Missions subject to the conditions mentioned in para 67 above.

XI ENTRY (‘X’) VISA

71 Eligibility

An Entry (‘X’) Visa may be granted to a foreigner in the following cases :-

(1) A Person of Indian Origin, who do not possess an OCI card, and may be granted ‘X-1’
Visa for a period of five years at a time, with multiple entry facility.

(2) Spouse and children of an Indian citizen/ Person of Indian Origin/ OCI cardholder (other than those who are registered as OCI cardholder) may be granted ‘X-2’ visa for a period of five years at a time, with multiple entry facility.

Note

(i) After completion of 5 years from the date of issue of X-1/ X-2 visa , if further extension is required, the proposal shall be referred by FRRO/ FRO concerned to the Ministry of Home Affairs for clearance. MHA would grant extension for one year after the expiry of the initial period of five years. Subsequent extensions, if any, up to a total period of another 5 years at a time may be granted by FRROs /FROs concerned. The same procedure will be adopted if further extension is

(ii) A “Person of Indian Origin” means – (a) a person who at any time held an Indian passport; or (b) a person who or either of his / her parents or grand parents or great grand parents, was born in , and was permanently resident in India, provided neither was at any time a citizen of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, Pakistan or Sri Lanka or any other country that may be specified by the Government of India from time to time.

(3) Foreign nationals coming to join Auroville Foundation shall be issued X-3 visa under one
of the following three categories:

(i) Long duration Visa : X-3 visa will be granted for five years with three entries in a year subject to the condition that the visa application is accompanied by a recommendation from the Secretary, Auroville Foundation. FRRO, Chennai is authorized to grant additional two entries in a calendar year (over and above the 3 entries permitted) under emergent conditions if there are reasonable grounds for the same, on case to case basis, on a specific recommendation from the Secretary, Auroville Foundation.

In cases where Secretary, Auroville Foundation has recommended a visa for 5 years but the Mission/ Post concerned has granted a visa for a period of less than 5 years, FRRO Chennai is authorized to extend the visa for a period of 5 years from the date of issue of initial visa on a specific recommendation from the Secretary, Auroville Foundation.

(ii) Short duration Visa: Foreign nationals covered under any one of the following categories will be entitled for One year “X-3” visa with three entries in a year – (a) Foreign nationals coming to join Auroville as interns, who are sponsored by schools /colleges / institutions / universities to carry out some study/project as part of their study curriculum; OR (b) recommended by the Secretary, Auroville Foundation to visit as Consultants or to provide assistance to some Civic Amenities/infrastructure project or commercial/production units run by Auroville Foundation; OR, (c) recommended by the Secretary, Auroville Foundation on probation for a certain duration to qualify for a long-term visa.

Cases for grant of extension of long duration visa and short duration visa would be reviewed by the Secretary, Auroville Foundation and FRRO, Chennai.

(iii) Short duration visa for volunteers  : For volunteers coming to Auroville Foundation to conduct a course or impart a training, participate in courses given at Auroville Institutions and to volunteer at institutions and work areas of the Auroville Foundation, if it is done without any monetary consideration, single entry, non-extendable, X-3 visa for a period of 3 months may be granted on a specific recommendation of the Secretary, Auroville Foundation.

(4) Foreign nationals coming to join Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Puducherry, may be granted X-3 Visa for a period of one year with multiple entry facility. This visa may be extended on year to year basis by FRRO, Chennai on the recommendation of Sri Aurobindo Ashram for a maximum period of 5 years from the date of issue of visa.

(5) Foreign nationals coming to join the Missionaries of Charity, Kolkata may be granted multiple entry ‘X-3’ Visa for appropriate duration subject to production of a letter of recommendation from the Missionaries of Charity, Kolkata. The ‘X-3’ visa may be renewed by the FRRO concerned up to a maximum period of 5 years from the date of issue of initial visa. Further renewal beyond 5 years will be granted only with the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

(6) Foreign nationals coming to join temples for true and spiritual training may be granted multiple entry ‘X-3’ Visa for appropriate duration on production of a letter of recommendation from the Temple authorities concerned. The ‘X-3’ visa of such genuine spiritualists may be renewed by the FRRO concerned up to a maximum period of 5 years from the date of issue of initial visa based on the recommendation of the Temple authorities concerned. Further renewal beyond 5 years may be granted only with the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

(7) Foreign Buddhist monks coming to India for joining the Buddhist Monasteries/ other Buddhist organizations for charity work, may be granted multiple entry ‘X-3’ Visa for a period of one year subject to the condition that he/she is duly sponsored by the Buddhist Monastery/ Buddhist organization that he/she proposes to join. One year ‘X-3’ visa in such cases can be further extended on a year to year basis for a maximum period of up to five years from the date of issue of the initial visa by the FRRO/FRO concerned. Such Buddhist Monks will be required to register themselves with the FRRO/ FRO concerned within 14 days of arrival, irrespective of their visa validity.

(8) Foreign nationals who own property in India may be granted multiple entry ‘X-4’ Visa for a period of one year. The foreign national must submit documentary proof of permission of the Reserve Bank of India for the purchase of ! holding the property in India and the document should show registration of the particular property with the registration authority concerned. The one year multi entry ‘X-4’ visa can be extended by the FRRO!FRO concerned on yearly basis up to a maximum period of 5 years from the date of initial visa.

(9) Diplomats! Officials on a personal (Non-official) visit to India may be granted ‘X-5’ Visa
for appropriate duration taking into account the purpose of visit.

(10) Ordinary passport holding dependents of diplomats! officials assigned to India (including in the UN and Non-UN International Organizations) may be granted ‘X-5D’ Visa for appropriate duration.

(11) Participants in international Sports events and the officials (including coach) of the Sports teams (other than those who are engaged in commercial sports events in India on contract like Indian Premier League, Indian Soccer League, Indian Badminton League with remuneration) may be granted ‘X-SP’ Visa of appropriate duration .

(12) Foreign nationals applying for visa for a purpose, which is not specifically covered under any visa category, may be granted ‘X-Misc’ Visa for appropriate duration. Such a Visa may be granted only with single entry and for the specific duration taking into account the purpose of visit. If the visa is granted for a period of stay exceeding 180 days, the foreigner will have to register himself! herself with the FRRO! FRO concerned within 14 days of arrival. This visa will be non-extendable and non-convertible to any other type of visa.

XII CONFERENCE VISA

72 Eligibility

A Conference visa is granted to a foreigner whose sole objective of visiting India is to attend a conference ! seminar or workshop being held in India. Conference visa may be granted for international conferences held to discuss a particular subject or for a seminar or workshop on a specific subject. For Business meetings, to discuss business matters of a particular company! organization and Board meetings, a foreigner may obtain either a Business Visa or e-Business Visa. Conference Visa shall not be issued for events which involve politically and! or socially sensitive subjects.

73 Procedure for prior clearance for holding an international conference / seminar / workshop (event clearance):

(i) Prior clearance of the Ministry of Home Affairs for holding an event (i.e. international
conference! seminar! workshop) will be required only in following cases:-

(a) If there are participants from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Sudan, foreigners of
Pakistani origin and Stateless persons; and

(b) If the participants are required to visit ‘Restricted’ or ‘Protected’ areas in India, Jammu & Kashmir and the North Eastern States (other than the States of Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland).

(ii) If an event, which from the stand point of parameters mentioned above, is being organized in India by a Ministry or Department of the Government of India, State Governments or UT Administrations, Public Sector Undertakings, Central Educational Institutions, Public Funded Universities or an organization owned and controlled by the Government of India or any State Government ! UT, United Nations or its Specialized Agencies, the organizer concerned shall forward the proposal with complete details to the Ministry of Home Affairs at least 30 days prior to the commencement of the event. In respect of participants from countries mentioned above, details in the following format should be sent to MHA at least 30 days prior to the commencement of the event:

Sl. No Name of appli- cant Father’s / Husb- and’s Name Natio- nality Date of Birth Place of

Birth

Pass- port Number Date & Place of
Issue
Date of Expiry Address
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

(iii) If an event, which from the stand point of parameters mentioned above is being organized in India by a private organizer- be it an NGO or a private institution-, the organizer concerned shall forward the proposal with complete details to the Ministry of Home Affairs (Foreigners Division) within 60 days prior to the commencement of the event with complete details of the participants from the above mentioned countries in the format given in sub-para (ii) above.

(iv) Participants from the countries specified above are required to apply for visa at the Indian Mission concerned ‘on line’.

(v) All such proposals requiring clearance in terms of the above mentioned paras should be addressed to the Section Officer (CC), Ministry of Home Affairs (Foreigners Division), Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium, India Gate, New Delhi-110002.

(vi) When the event is cleared, the Ministry of Home Affairs will inform the Missions concerned accordingly and will authorize the grant of visa in respect of specific

74 Duration of visa

Delegates (other than Pakistani nationals) coming to attend conference etc. in India can combine tourism with attending the conference. Indian Missions may at their discretion grant visas for the required period.

75 A foreign national intending to attend an International Conference! seminar! workshop while already in India on Business! Employment ! Student! Research visa may seek prior permission of the FRRO! FRO concerned by making a suitable application along with all relevant details.

XIII SPORTS VISA

76 Procedure for grant of clearance

Grant of visa to members of sports teams shall be regulated by the following provisions:

(i) Invitation to foreign sports teams and sports persons to visit India may be extended by the concerned Sports Federation ! Association in India only after obtaining approval of the Government of India in the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (Department of Sports).

(ii) The organizer shall submit the proposal for holding the international sports event to the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports for prior clearance.

(iii) In respect of following categories of international sports events, Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports (Department of Sports) will refer the proposals with their recommendations to the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Ministry of External Affairs for prior clearance at least 30 days prior to the commencement of the event –

(a) Events involving participants from the Prior Reference Category (PRC) countries i.e. Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Sudan, foreigners of Pakistani origin and Stateless persons

(b) Events where participants are required to visit ‘Restricted’ or ‘Protected’ areas in India, Jammu & Kashmir and the North Eastern States (other than the States of Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland).

In such cases, the Indian Missions! Posts shall issue visa to the participants only on production of – (i) requisite clearance from the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, (ii) clearance for holding the event from the Ministry of Home Affairs and (iii) political clearance for holding the event from the Ministry of External Affairs.

(iv) Participants from the countries specified above are required to apply for visa at the Indian Mission! Post concerned ‘on line’.

(v) Sports teams and sports persons shall be granted “X-SP” Visa for appropriate duration.

Note : Foreign nationals who are taken on contract to play in commercial sports events in India with remuneration will be granted a Business Visa (B-Sports) with multiple entry facility for appropriate period.

77 Meeting of Sports Bodies

Members of the delegations of the foreign countries attending meetings of sports bodies like the International Olympic Association, etc. will be granted “Conference Visa” of appropriate sub-category.

 XIV MOUNTAINEERING VISA

 78 Procedure for grant of clearance

(1) All requests for Mountaineering expeditions should be addressed to the Indian Mountaineering Foundation (IMF) at least four months in advance along with full A copy of the requests will also be sent to the Ministry of Home Affairs.

(2) In order to assist in making local arrangements etc., a liaison officer will be assigned to each expedition (at its cost) by the Indian Mountaineering Foundation. No expedition will be allowed without a liaison officer.

(3) Mountaineering expeditions will not be permitted if the peak to be climbed and/or the approach area lies within the restricted/protected areas, without obtaining the necessary prior permission from the authorities concerned.

(4) For Mountaineering expeditions, the Missions may grant Mountaineering (MX’) visa for appropriate period.

79 Peaks opened for mountaineering expeditions

(a) List of 104 peaks opened for mountaineering expeditions in Jammu & Kashmir (Leh
area) is at Appendix VIII.

(5) Prior permission of the Central Government is not required by a foreigner or group of foreigners for climbing 113 Mountaineering and Trekking Peaks as in Appendix IX. However, prior permission of the Central Government will be required if the expedition team includes nationals of China, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. This is subject to Indian Mountaineering Foundation specifying the routes, attaching a liaison officer and imposing such restrictions as it may deem necessary.

XVI JOURNALIST VISA

80 Eligibility

A journalist Visa is granted to:-

(i) A foreigner who is a professional journalist, photographer, documentary film producer or director (other than of commercial films), a representative of a radio and/or television organization, travel writer/ travel promotion photographer etc.

(ii) A professional journalist working for an association or a company engaged in the production or broadcast of audio news or audio visual news or current affairs programmes through the print media, electronic or any other form as defined in clause (R) of sub-section (1) of section 2 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 or any other mode of mass communication.

(iii) A correspondent /columnist/cartoonist/editor/ owner of the association or company referred to above.

(iv) A Journalist visiting India for any other purpose, such as attending a Conference, tourism, meeting relatives etc.

81 Validity and General conditions

Journalist visa of appropriate sub-category may be granted for upto three months stay in India. A six months Journalist visa, with a single or double entry, may be given, in rare and exceptional cases. Multiple entry visas may be issued only with the prior approval of the Ministry of External Affairs.

Family members accompanying the correspondent may be given appropriate dependent visa co-terminus with the validity of Visa granted to the correspondent.

On arrival in New Delhi, the applicant is advised to contact the External Publicity Division of the Ministry of External Affairs. In other places, he/she may contact the office of the Government of India’s Press Information Bureau.

82 Procedure for grant of permission to visit Restricted and Protected Areas, Jammu &  Kashmir and the North Eastern States on Journalist Visa

(i) A foreign journalist, TV cameraperson etc, including a foreign journalist already based in India, who desires to visit a restricted or protected area or Jammu & Kashmir or the North Eastern States, should apply for a special permit through the Ministry of External Affairs (External Publicity Division).

(ii) If any such request is received directly by a State Government, or any other authority empowered to issue a special permit, the application shall be referred to the Ministry of External Affairs (External Publicity Division) with a copy to the Ministry of Home Affairs.

(iii) A foreign journalist coming to India on a short-term visit and desiring to go to a restricted/protected area or Jammu & Kashmir or the North Eastern States is advised to apply for a permit in the prescribed form through an Indian Mission.

83 Procedure regarding the shooting of a documentary film/advertisement film in India by a foreigner

Proposals regarding the shooting of a documentary film/advertisement film will be processed in the Ministry of External Affairs (External Publicity Division).

Documentaries that do not deal with sensitive subjects/ locations will be cleared by the External Publicity Division of the Ministry of External Affairs. Indian Missions will issue Journalist visas to the crew after obtaining clearance from MEA. MEA’s permission is a clearance for a documentary from the perspective of the external publicity Division only. Local clearances, wherever necessary, such as from ASI, municipal authorities etc. as per their policy/practice on such filming/ photography, must to be obtained by the producers directly from the authorities concerned.

Prior approval of Ministry of Home Affairs is required to be obtained in cases where filming is to be carried out in areas requiring Restricted Area/ Protected Area Permit or other restricted areas, such as border districts, defence installations and other areas of strategic importance, national parks and wildlife sanctuaries.

Prior clearance of Ministry of Home Affairs, line Ministries/Departments and the State Governments/ UTs concerned will have to be obtained when the proposed documentary deals with sensitive issues. In such cases, the Ministry of External Affairs will process the cases for clearance from the Departments / Ministries concerned. Indian Missions shall ensure that visas for such proposals are issued only after obtaining final clearance from the MEA.

84 Foreign media men assigned to India

Indian Missions! Posts are authorized to issue Journalist Visa for an initial stay of three months with Triple entry to correspondents of foreign newspapers, news agencies, media etc. coming to India as resident representatives of their newspapers, TV organizations etc., and who will be applying for accreditation to the Press Information Bureau in New Delhi.

Family members accompanying the correspondent will be given appropriate dependent visa co-terminus with the duration of the visa granted to the correspondent.

XVI  FILM VISA

85 Procedure for processing of proposals for shooting of a feature film! reality TV show and or commercial TV serials

(1) All such proposals will be processed in the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

(2) The film has to be shot according to the script, as approved by the Government of India. Ministry of Information and Broadcasting will attach a liaison officer to the foreign team wherever it is felt necessary to do so by the Script Evaluator.

(3) The foreign team must show the complete film to a representative of the Government of India, in India or abroad (i.e. an Indian Mission abroad), before its actual release anywhere in the world. No portion of the film should be shown in the open forum without prior approval of the Government of India.

(4) Prior clearance of the Ministry of Home Affairs for shooting of feature films! TV reality shows! serials will be necessary only in respect of cases where shooting is to be done in Jammu & Kashmir, North East, Border areas and areas declared as restricted! protected! prohibited areas and! or cases involving sensitive subjects. In other cases, the Ministry of I & B will examine the proposal and communicate their clearance to the Indian Missions! Posts concerned for grant of visa to the foreigners involved. Local permission, wherever required, must be obtained by the filming team from the local authorities. The list of equipments to be temporarily imported in connection with the shooting is required to be submitted to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, in advance.

In case the programme in question has a bearing on India’s relations with a foreign country or has a foreign policy perspective, views of MEA (XP Division) must be sought.

86 Grant of Film (‘F’) Visa

(i) Foreign nationals who are coming to shoot a feature film! reality TV show and! or commercial TV serials in India will be granted Film Visa provided the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has approved the proposal. The visa would be film

(ii) The maximum duration of the Visa will be for one year with multiple entry facility. An extension can be granted by FRRO! FRO concerned for a maximum period of 1 year. Application to extend the period of filming must be submitted not later than thirty days before expiry date of fully approved shooting period.

(iii) The maximum number of crew for a specific film being shot by an international production company that can be allowed under this visa regime will be 125, unless the project is of such scale that it necessitates the presence of a larger international crew in India which will be allowed on case to case basis.

(iv) The foreigners coming on Film Visa will have to register himself! herself with the FRRO! FRO concerned irrespective of the duration of the Visa! stay of the foreigner in India.

XVII MISSIONARY VISA

87 Eligibility

A Missionary visa is granted to a foreigner whose sole objective of visiting India is Missionary work not involving proselytization. Visa shall NOT be granted to preachers and evangelists who desire to come to India on propaganda campaigns, whether on their own or at the invitation of any organization in India.

88 General principles/conditions

Foreign missionaries coming to India for the first time in replacement ( not augmentation) will be admitted only if they possess outstanding qualifications or specialized experience in their line, and no suitable Indian is available for the job. Applications from foreign missionaries coming to work in new foreign missionary centres will be considered only if the society concerned has obtained permission from the Government of India for opening the centre. A list of recognized foreign missionary societies in India is given in Appendix X. No new society will ordinarily be recognized. Applications for visas from members of recognized societies should be accompanied by a sponsorship letter from a responsible official of the society. The applicant should also be required to cite in the application, the names of two responsible persons in India ( preferably in the State! UT in which the applicant proposes to work) who will furnish a guarantee bond to the Government for his!her maintenance in, and repatriation from, India.

89 Procedure for making visa application

Visa application in respect of foreign missionaries can be made to – (a) the Indian Mission! Post concerned abroad; (b) the State Government! UT concerned and (c) the Ministry of Home Affairs with a copy to the State Government! UT concerned .

90 Validity of Visa

The Indian Missions! Posts may grant a Missionary (M) Visa to a foreigner for a maximum period of one year with multiple entry facility. This visa may be extended by FRRO! FRO concerned on year to year basis for a maximum period of 5 years from the date of issue of initial visa, with the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

91 Inspection visits

Bishops, Superiors, etc. of foreign missionary organizations who desire to visit or inspect the working of their institutions in India and any personal assistant or secretary accompanying them will be granted ‘Entry’ (X-Misc) Visa valid for stay up to three months in India. If, however, a visit to any place in the restricted! protected area is involved, separate applications to visit such places shall be submitted in the prescribed form and such applications shall be referred to the Ministry of Home Affairs at least two months in advance of the date of the proposed visit.

XVIII. OTHER CATEGORIES

92 Citizens of Maldives

A citizen of Maldives visiting India for a short period, upto 90 days, is exempt from the requirement of visa, provided he/she holds a valid passport. The period of 90 days shall include any prior period of stay of such foreigner in India during a period of six months immediately preceding the date of his/her entry into India. This visa free entry will be available only for Tourism and Medical purposes.

93 Stateless persons

Single entry visa, not exceeding one month, may be granted by the Indian Missions/ Posts to a stateless person (other than Afghan, Chinese including Taiwanese, Iranian, Pakistani or Somalian origin). In respect of persons of Afghan, Chinese including Taiwanese, Iranian, Pakistani or Somalian origin, prior clearance of the Ministry of Home Affairs will be required.

94 Facility of Collective Landing permits for group tourists

Foreign tourists in groups of four or more, arriving by air or sea, sponsored by Indian Travel Agencies approved by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India and with a pre-drawn itinerary may be granted collective landing permit for a period not exceeding 60 days, with multiple-entry facility to enable them to visit a neighbouring country. In order to avail of this facility, the tourist or travel agency concerned shall mandatorily fill in the applications online on website www.indianvisaonline.gov.in. A complete list of group members along with printed visa applications and their itinerary should be submitted by the tourist or travel agency to the FRRO/ FRO concerned, 72 hours in advance.

The facility of Collective Landing Permits for Group Tourists will be presently available only at the following Airports and Seaports:-

Airports – Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Goa.

Seaports – Marmagoa Seaport (Goa), Kochi Seaport, Calicut Seaport, Thiruvananthapuram Seaport, Mumbai Seaport, Nhava Sheva Seaport, Chennai Seaport and Kolkata Seaport.

The facility of Collective Landing Permits shall, however, not be available to the nationals of Afghanistan, China, Ethiopia, Iraq, Nigeria, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and foreign nationals of Pakistani origin.

Passengers on cruise ships may be granted a collective landing permit. However, in case a cruise ship visits more than one port in India, and does not visit ports of any other country, a collective landing permit will be issued at the first port of entry into India. There will be no need to issue a collective landing permit at each port of visit included in the itinerary.

95 Police Clearance Certificate

A foreigner staying abroad may apply for Police clearance certificate to the Indian Mission/ Post concerned indicating the purpose for which such Police Clearance Certificate is required.

Foreigners residing in India shall apply for such certificate to the concerned FRRO/FRO as per their place of residence.

96 Grant/Extension of Stay Visa/ Residential Permit of Afghanistan nationals staying in India due to disturbed conditions in that country

Grant of Stay Visa/ Residential Permit

Stay Visa/ Residential Permit for one year at a time may be granted by FRRO/ FRO concerned to such Afghanistan nationals on a case to case basis with prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs. Afghanistan nationals requesting for ‘Stay Visa/ Residential Permit’ shall apply online on the C-FRO Module. For this purpose, please visit https://indianfrro.gov.in 

Economic immigrants i.e. who have arrived in India in search of economic opportunities, without any fear of persecution, WILL NOT be eligible for Stay Visa/ Residential Permit.

Stay Visa/ Residential Permit granted to Afghan nationals will be State/UT specific and their movement will be restricted to the State/UT where they are permitted to stay. For visiting any place in any other State/UT, such Afghan nationals will have to seek prior permission of the FRRO/FRO concerned.

Grant of Stay Visa/Residential Permit is subject to Police Reporting every year at the place where the Afghan national is allowed to stay.

Extension of Stay Visa/ Residential Permit

Extension of Stay Visa/ Residential Permit, if justified, may be granted by FRRO/ FRO concerned for one year at a time with prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs. Applications for extension of Stay Visa/ Residential Permit will be submitted online by the applicant to the FRRO/ FRO concerned in C-FRO module online. For this purpose, please visit https://indianfrro.gov.in 

General Provisions

All provisions relating to registration/ exit permission applicable to foreign nationals and instructions issued in this regard from time to time, shall be applicable to Afghanistan nationals as well. Phone numbers of all Afghan nationals on Stay Visa/ Residential Permit should be reported to the FRRO/FRO concerned and any change should be informed to the FRRO/FRO concerned without delay.

No exit fee/overstay fee to be charged from these Afghan nationals when they are leaving the country permanently. In all such cases, biometric enrolment and photograph shall be taken by FRRO/FRO concerned before granting exit permission.

XIX FOREIGNERS OF INDIAN ORIGIN

97 Regularization of stay of foreign nationals married to Indian nationals

FRROs/ FROs are delegated powers to regularize the stay of foreigners who had entered India on Tourist Visa and have been staying in India for many years due to marriage to Indian nationals, convert their visas to Entry (X-2) visa and grant further extension of visa on case to case basis.

98 Cases of foreigners married to Indian nationals and having X visa, whose Indian spouse has expired or the person has gone for divorce

(a) In case of death of Indian spouse :

(i) If the couple had a child and the foreign national has not re-married another foreigner/ Indian national, he/she may be allowed extension of stay on X-2 visa by FRRO/ FRO concerned subject to usual checks and no local objection.

(ii) If the foreigner is a childless widow/ widower, the existing X-2 visa will be
cancelled and he/ she will be granted exit.

(iii) If the foreign national is remarried to another foreign national, no extension of
visa will be allowed and he/she will be granted exit.

(iv) In case the foreigner has remarried an Indian national, the existing X-2 visa will be cancelled and the foreigner will be granted exit advising him/ her to come back on a new X-2 Visa.

(b) In case of divorce :

(i) If the couple had a child whose custody has been given to the foreigner by a court and the foreigner has not re-married another foreigner/ Indian national, he/she may be allowed extension of stay on X-2 visa by FRRO/ FRO concerned subject to usual checks and no local objection.

(ii) If the couple has no child, the existing X-2 visa of the foreigner will be cancelled and he/ she will be granted exit.

(iii) If the foreign national is remarried to another foreign national, no extension of visa will be allowed and he/she will be granted exit.

(iv) In case the foreigner has remarried an Indian national, the existing X-2 visa would be cancelled and the foreigner would be granted exit advising him/ her to come back on a new X-2 Visa.

XXI LANDING PERMIT

99 A landing permit facility, up to a maximum of three days, can be given to a foreigner –

(i) who enters India by air or sea, without a valid visa, under emergent circumstances (like death or sudden illness in family);

(ii) who has arrived in India by air or sea and desires to leave –

(a) the specified precincts of the airport, or

(b) the ship during its halt at an Indian port;

(iii) who has arrived by air and desires to resume his/her journey by the next regularly
scheduled flight;

(iv) who has arrived by sea and intends to resume his! her journey from the same place by a scheduled air service for which he!she holds a valid ticket ( in such cases, the foreigner will be allowed to leave the ship to proceed to the designated airport to catch his! her flight on a landing permit).

Note:

(1) Seamen and crew of the ship may be allowed temporary landing permit into India for a period of up to 15 days, during the stay of the ship at an Indian port for purpose of loading/unloading, fuelling/refuelling, repairs to the ship, or on other reasonable

(2) No landing permit facility shall be granted to a national of Afghanistan, China, Ethiopia, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia & Sri Lanka and foreign nationals of Pakistan origin even if he!she is transiting through India and has a confirmed onward journey ticket.

100 Validity

A landing permit w(a) ill be valid for a single journey and for a period of stay not exceeding 3 days. This permit is not extendable except in case of extreme emergency like strike, traffic disruption, inclement weather, illness, etc. and will be restricted to the exact period for which the exigency obtains. Extensions of this nature shall be disposed of at the level of FRRO!FRO concerned.

101 Grant of TLP to crew of non-scheduled airlines, chartered flights operated by such airlines  and Special flights

Immigration Authorities may grant Temporary Landing Permits for crew of non-scheduled airlines, chartered flights operated by such airlines and Special flights, as indicated below:-

(A) In respect of the following categories of crew of non-scheduled airlines, chartered flights operated by such airlines and Special flights, the Immigration Authorities may grant Temporary Landing Permits (TLPs) subject to usual checks:-

(a) Medical Emergency, (b) Technical problems in the aircraft and Technical landing for refueling ! for crew rest, (c) Diversion of the aircraft to an Indian airport due to bad weather conditions in the nearby foreign airport and (d) Relief flights including flights operated under UN Mission

(B) In respect of the following categories, TLP may be granted by the Immigration authorities for the crew [except in case of nationals of countries mentioned in note (2) below para 99], subject to usual checks and DGCA intimating flight clearance:-

(a) VIP flights, (b) Cargo flights and (c) Private Aircrafts of leading businessmen coming for business purpose.

(C) In respect of crew of tourist charter flights [except in case of nationals of countries mentioned in note (2) below para 99], TLP may be granted subject to usual checks and further subject to the following conditions:-

(a) The tourist or travel agency sponsoring the tourists shall mandatorily fill in the visa applications for the crew members of the charter flights online and (b) A complete list of crew members along with printed visa applications and their itinerary should be submitted by the tourist or travel agency to the FRRO/ FRO concerned, 72 hours in advance.

******

Download Full Appendix I to Appendix – X

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