OCI (Overseas Citizenship of India) cards
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OCI (Overseas Citizenship of India) cards

Please Note: All Applications for OCI must be sent to the CKGS Centre at 225 Bush Street San Francisco, CA.

CKGS is the only authorized Service Provider for the Embassy of India and its Consulates across the USA for Visa, OCI, Renunciation of Indian Citizenship services from May 21, 2014. Applicants based on their jurisdiction can submit their applications to our 6 centers. Washington DC, New York, Chicago, Houston, San Francisco & Atlanta.

NOTE: EMBASSY/CONSULATES DOES NOT HANDLE DIRECT APPLICATIONS BY WALK-IN OR BY POST / MAIL.

 

Do not go directly to the Government of India website to fill the online application. You must go via the links on the CKGS website provided below. You will be guided to the Government of India website to fill your online form/s at the appropriate step via the CKGS website.

 

For USA applicants, the CKGS website has been customized so that the supplementary documents, forms are as per the requirements of the Embassy of India in USA.

 

The CKGS website will identify your passport category, type, duration, fees and help avoid errors. To assist you, further many forms and letters that have repetitive information will get auto populated and you only have to fill in the missing fields.

 

 

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How to Apply?

www.in.ckgs.us/oci/how-to-apply

Get Started

www.in.ckgs.us/oci

Frequently Asked Questions

www.in.ckgs.us/faq

 

CKGS Application Center (IPAC) 

225 Bush St #390,
San Francisco, CA 94104
View Map

Contact / Feedback

Click on www.in.ckgs.us/feedback; you will get a reply within 24 hours.

 

For an existing applicant, CKGS will only be able to assist you once you provide the following information.

 1.  Web Reference Number

 2.  Passport Number

 3.  Date of Birth

 

Call

(213)213-5019

 

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In terms of the notification issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs on 9th January, 2015, all the existing PIO Card holders as on 9.1.2015 shall be deemed to be OCI Cardholders.  However, all persons having valid PIO cards as on 9th January, 2015 are advised to apply for registration as OCI cardholder in view of the following advantages in possessing an OCI card:-

(a)          OCI card is a smart card
(b)          Possession of an OCI card will facilitate quicker immigration clearance at the Immigration Check Posts
(c)          It will help in obtaining various Consular Services from the Indian Missions
(d)          For those who are resident in India, it will facilitate in availing various services in India.

As regards OCI cards, including deemed OCI cards  they are to be got reissued  whenever passport is renewed for persons under twenty years, and OCI card needs to be renewed  after crossing 50 years of age only once that too when the US passport is renewed.  If time is short and you have to travel, make online application carry acknowledgement/ print out thereof, old passport and new passport and the PIO/ OCI card.


 

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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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OCI "U" Visa Sticker Advisory

 

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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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For detailed guidelines on submitting the applications, documentation requirements and fee etc., you may visit the following link: http://www.in.ckgs.us 

The Consulate General of India, San Francisco, does not, directly accept applications, either in person or through mail for OCI card services.

  • OCI Card will not be granted to a child whose one parent is eligible for OCI Card, and if the other parent is or ever was a citizen of Pakistan or Bangladesh.
  • If you wish to seek any information regarding these services, or if you wish to ascertain status of processing of your application, or if you have any complaints/suggestions regarding the services, you must contact CKGS only.
  • ALL VISA/OCI/PIO APPLICANTS ARE HEREWITH ADVISED TO FILL UP THE ADDITIONAL PARTICULARS FORM ALONG WITH THE VISA/OCI/PIO APPLICATION FORMS. THIS IS MANDATORY, WITHOUT WHICH NO APPLICATION WILL BE PROCESSED.
  • Please contact Cox & Kings Global Services San Francisco at: www.in.ckgs.us
  • CKGS Contact / Feedback: <Click Here> Helpline: Tel nos: (516)206-1483 & (646)589-0088
  • Consulate will not reply to any email or telephone enquiry for OCI card services unless the service is delayed by more than 50 working days from the date of submission of all necessary documents.

    During Holiday Peak Season (01 April – 31 August) please expect delays on processing the application due to heavy rush of Applications.

  • In case of OCI/PIO/Visa obtained by applicant by virtue of being a spouse of an eligible person of Indian origin, the applicant must submit a declaration by the spouse stating that he/she has no objection for issuance of OCI/PIO card/visa. In the    event of a divorce/separation between the two persons who obtained the OCI/PIO/Visa documents from the Indian Consulate, the OCI/PIO cards will be required to be surrendered. It is the duty of the applicants to report and inform such events to the Consulate General of India, San Francisco for further necessary action as per Government of India rules and regulations. Failure to disclose divorce/separation of the eligible spouse as mentioned above may result in disqualification of the spouse of Indian origin from holding OCI/PIO cards.

 

OCI Travel Advisory – Re-issue of OCI Card (On getting a New Passport)

• For an applicant who is 20 years of age or younger, OCI documents must be re-issued each time a new passport is issued.
• For an applicant who is 50 years of age or older, OCI documents must be re-issued once after the issuance of a new passport. If the OCI card is issued for the first time after the age of 50 years, then there is no need for re-issuance of OCI.
• For an applicant who is 21 to 49 years of age, there is no need to re-issue OCI documents each time a new passport is issued. However, if the applicant desires, he/she can request that the OCI documents be re-issued so that the OCI documents reflect the correct passport number.
Please view the full requirements for OCI Re-issue for more information at the following link.

http://mha1.nic.in/pdfs/GuidelinesOCI.pdf

 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on OCI Card:
 

1. What are the Benefits for an OCI card holder:

An OCI card holder gets the following benefits:
i. A multiple entry, multi-purpose life-long visa for visiting India.
ii. Exemption from registration with local police authority for any length of stay in India.
iii. Parity with Non-resident Indians (NRIs) in respect of economic, financial and educational fields, except in relation to acquisition of agricultural or plantation properties.
iv. OCI can be used as identity proof for application of PAN Card and driving   licence as well as for opening a bank account if the OCI card holder is residing in India.

2. What benefits an OCI Card holder is not entitled to:

The OCI Card holder is not entitled:
i. to vote,
ii. to be a member of a Legislative Assembly or of a Legislative Council or of the Parliament of India,
iii. to hold Indian constitutional posts such as that of the President, Vice President, Judge of the Supreme Court or High Court etc.
iv. He/she cannot normally hold employment in the Government

3. Under what conditions should one apply for New OCI Card and Sticker:

(i) In case of issuance of new passport.
(a) For an applicant who is 20 years of age or younger, OCI documents must be re-issued each time a new passport is issued.
(b) For an applicant who is 50 years of age or older, OCI documents must be re-issued once after the issuance of a new passport. If the OCI card is issued for the first time after the age of 50 years, then there is no need for re-issuance of OCI.
(c) For an applicant who is 21 to 49 years of age, there is no need to re-issue OCI documents each time a new passport is issued. However, if the applicant desires, he/she can request that the OCI documents be re-issued so that the OCI documents reflect the correct passport number.
(ii) In case there is a change in personal particulars.
(iii) In case of loss/damage of passport and/or OCI booklet.
(iv) For correcting personal particulars entered wrongly while submitting online applications e.g name, father’s name, date of birth etc.,
(v) In case of change of address/occupation.

Vide circular No. 26011/06/2015-OCI dated 29th January, 2015 of Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, all immigration authorities in India will not insist on production of the foreign passport containing the 'U' Visa Sticker in the case of OCI Cardholders while they enter/exit India and the immigration clearance will be granted based on production of the 'OCI CARD ONLY'.

4. Can foreign nationals, who are not otherwise eligible for OCI, get OCI if they are married to persons who are eligible for OCI?

The spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India or spouse of foreign origin of an Overseas Citizen of India cardholder registered under section 7A and whose marriage has been registered and subsisted for a continuous period of not less than two years immediately preceding the presentation of the application.

5. Are Minor children eligible for OCI Card?

Minor children whose both parents are citizens of India or one of the parents is a citizen of India are eligible for OCI Card. Except whose one parent is of a pakistani or bangladeshi origin.

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

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

7. Can a person renounce OCI?

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

8. 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.

9. 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.

Additional FAQs - OCI Services

 

Guidelines regarding OCI Card holders for travel to India

Foreign nationals of Indian origin are issued lifelong “U” visa stickers in their passports along with OCI Cards (OCI booklet). It has been observed that to lack of awareness among the airline officials/employees, many such foreign nationals face problems during their check-in at foreign airports for India bound flights. In order to avoid inconvenience to such foreign nationals of Indian origin the following guidelines may please be brought to the notice of your counterparts at foreign airports.

  1. Foreigners holding OCI cards are required to carry their foreign passport bearing 'U' visa sticker for travel to India. However, due to expiry or re-issue of their foreign passports, these foreigners are issued new passports, as such they are allowed to travel to India with their new passport along with old passports/cancelled passports having 'U' visa sticker.
  2. If the OCI card holder acquires nationality of a different country after obtaining OCI card, except that of Pakistan and Bangladesh, he/she is also allowed to enter into India provided he/she is carrying his/her old passport having lifelong India 'U' visa sticker pasted on it along with the new passport of the recently acquired nationality.
  3. If OCI card holder is carrying only OCI card without carrying old/cancelled foreign passport bearing 'U' visa sticker, may be granted Temporary Landing Permit in India for a period of 30 days extendable up to 180 days by FRRO/FRO concerned without levying any charge after verification from the OCI database. Also, if they are not carrying OCI card, but carrying foreign passport bearing 'U' visa sticker, the entry is allowed.
  4. If the crew members of the scheduled flights who hold valid Indian visas including OCI/PIO cards may be cleared on the visas and filling up of Crew Landing Permits should not be insisted upon in such cases, however, names of all the crew members will remain on the GD. The Crew Landing Permit (CLP) needs to be granted only in cases where the crew of such scheduled flights does not have valid Indian visas.
  5. It is clarified that the airlines bringing such foreign nationals with their valid passports and OCI cards, but not having old/cancelled passport with “U” visa sticker would not be liable for prosecution under the Immigration (Carriers’ Liability) Act, 2000.

NOTE:- Any change incorporated in above guidelines is updated/modified in the website of www.boi.gov.in from time to time.

 

 

Important Advisory:      The Government of India is pleased to inform vide Notification No.585(E) dated 23.03.2012, permitting use of OCI registration booklets of OCIs to be treated as their identification for any services rendered to them in India. It also allows OCIs to give an affidavit attested by a notary public stating that a particular specific address may be treated as their place of residence in India.