PIO (Person of Indian Origin) Cards
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PIO (Person of Indian Origin) Cards

Conversion of PIO cards into OCI cards

 

OCI in lieu of PIO card

A separate online application for issue of OCI card in lieu of the PIO card without payment of any registration fee has been devised and available at http://in.ckgs.us. The applicant will have to pay the service charges for the outsourcing company as well as postage charges.

The existing PIO cardholders can travel to India using the PIO card with valid passport. However, the PIO cardholders are advised to apply for OCI in lieu of PIO as soon as possible at http://in.ckgs.us

Gazette Notification on Withdrawal of PIO scheme and merger of PIO card with OCI card and GUIDELINES for registration of new OCI cards.  Gazette Notification No.L—(N)04/0007/2003—15 dated 10.03.2015
 

 

 

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No. 475/US(CPV)/2015
Government of India
Ministry of External Affairs
(CPV Division)
 

New Delhi, June 05, 2015

CIRCULAR

          This is to notify that submission of application for OCI card in lieu of PIO card is voluntary and optional. OCI card in lieu of PIO card can be applied at https://passport.gov.in/oci. All extant PIO cards will continue to be valid until further instructions on the matter are conveyed by MHA.

2.       Endorsements stating that existing PIO cards are valid for life would be made at the first point with which the card holder comes into contact, be it an Indian Mission, an FRRO or an immigration check-point. These endorsements/ stamps would, however, not be mandatory

 

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Consulate General of India, San Francisco
22 May 2015
 

It has been brought to our attention that rumors are spreading among Indian Diaspora community members that PIO card holders are not able to travel to India with PIO CARD after June 18th, 2015.

2.         As you are all aware that the Government of India has withdrawn the PIO Card scheme and replaced it with OCI scheme for all Indian origin US passport holders. As part of the exercise of bringing about an uniformity in the scheme, all PIO card holders were intimated to get their PIO card converted into OCI card at the earliest as per instructions issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). As per these earlier instructions, initially for a period of 3 months, the submission of the application for OCI card in lieu of PIO card was voluntary. However, after the initial period of three months, the conversion of the cards was to be made mandatory. The persons were to apply for OCI card in lieu of PIO card only at https://passport.gov.in/oci.

3.         Considering the concerns and issues related to this conversion from PIO card to OCI card, it has been decided that PIO cards already issued continue to be valid documents. Applying for OCI cards in lieu of PIO cards at the website indicated above will be optional for the applicant until further instructions. All concerned are hereby informed that there is no deadline for conversion from PIO card to OCI cards. However, we urge all PIO card holders to apply for change to OCI cards for uniformity sake. However, when passports are changed / renewed, applicants may apply for miscellaneous services to update their passport details in the OCI cards.

4.         As conveyed earlier, endorsements stating that existing PIO cards are valid for life would be made at the first immigration point with which the card holder comes into contact, be it an Indian Mission, an FRRO or an immigration check-point. These endorsements/stamps would, however, not be mandatory.

 

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Consulate General of India, San Francisco
16 January 2015
 
Merger of PIO & OCI

1.  This Consulate has been informed by the Ministry of Home Affairs of the Government of India on 16 January, 2015 that the Central Government has vide Gazette Notification No.26011/01/2014IC.I dated 09.01.2015. Exercising powers conferred by subsection (2) of section 7A of the Citizenship Act 1955 (57 of 1955)  specified that with effect from 9th January, 2015 all existing Persons of Indian Origin card holders registered as such shall be deemed to be Overseas Citizens of India card holders.

2.  The PIO scheme has been withdrawn vide Gazette Notification No. 25024/9/2014 – F. I. dated 9th January, 2015.

3.  As a consequence of the above, the Consulate has been directed to return all PIO applications received before 9th January, 2015 and pending, and all PIO applications received on or after 9th January, 2015, with a request to the applicants that they may apply for the OCI card scheme or may seek a Visa for travel to India as they deem appropriate. The Consulate would extend all possible assistance to such applicants so that their travel obligations and plans are not disturbed.

4.  Consular applicants are also hereby informed that consequent to the promulgation of the Citizenship (Amendment) Ordinance 2015 which has carried out amendments to the Citizenship Act 1955,  the following additional categories of applicants have been enabled to apply for registration as Overseas Citizen of India:-

     a)  Spouse of citizen of India or spouse of an OCI registered under section 7A of the Act and whose marriage has been registered and subsisted for a continuous period of not less than two years immediately preceding the presentation of the application provided the spouse is not a person of Pakistan / Bangladesh origin.

       b)  A minor whose both parents are Indian citizens.

5.  Consular applicants with any travel related emergencies or any grievances may send an email to the following for redress:-

      a)  Pending PIO matters – cepo@cgisf.org

      b)  Visa issues – visa@cgisf.org

      c)  OCI issues – cepo@cgisf.org / ocicgsfo@gmail.com

 

NOTICE:

 

This is to inform that vide Gazette Notification No.26011/01/2014IC.I dated 09.01.2015, all PIO cards issued till 09.01.2015 are deemed to be OCI card. PIO Card scheme has been withdrawn vide Gazette Notification No.25024/9/2014F.I dated 09.01.2015. All PIO applications, pending with the Mission for processing, are being returned to the applicants with a request to apply for OCI card on the same fee prescribed for the PIO card. Henceforth, applicants may apply for OCI card ONLY, as PIO card scheme is no longer in existence.

In case the PIO card holder has new passport then he/she can travel to India on their new passport with the valid PIO card and old passport endorsed on the PIO card.

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on PIO Card:
 

1. What is the validity period of PIO (now considered OCI cards)?

Pios are now deemed to be OCIs and valid for lifelong.

The existing PIO Cards are now valid for life of the holder. All the immigration offices have duly been informed by the Government of India that they should affix a ‘Lifelong’ stamp as and when the holder of a 15 year validity card enters/exits any Indian Airport.  If the Immigration Officer does not affix the stamp you should ask for stamping “Lifelong” stamp on the PIO Card. Until new rules are in place endorsement on PIO cards continues.

2. Do these PIO (now considered OCI cads) need to be renewed whenever holders passport is renewed?

You may need to get an endorsement in the card as and when a new passport is issued.

The existing PIO Cards are now valid for life of the holder. All the immigration offices have duly been informed by the Government of India that they should affix a ‘Lifelong’ stamp as and when the holder of a 15 year validity card enters/exits any Indian Airport.  If the Immigration Officer does not affix the stamp you should ask for stamping “Lifelong” stamp on the PIO Card. Until new rules are in place endorsement on PIO cards continues.