Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) Card
The Constitution of India does not allow holding Indian citizenship and Citizenship of a foreign country simultaneously.
Application for registration as OCI cardholder can be made Online. Before filling the application form, instructions may be perused carefully to ensure that there are no mistakes.
Advantages of obtaining OCI Card
Registered OCIs shall be entitled to following benefits:
Multiple entry, multi-purpose lifelong visa to visit India;
Exemption from reporting to Police authorities for any length of stay in India;
Parity with NRIs in financial, economic and educational fields except in the acquisition of agricultural or plantation properties.
Registered Overseas Citizen of India shall be treated at par with Non Resident-Indian in the matter of inter-country adoption of Indian children.
Registered Overseas Citizens of India shall be treated at par with resident Indian nationals in the matter of tariffs in air fares in domestic sectors in India.
Registered Overseas Citizens of India shall be charged the same entry fee as domestic Indian visitors to visit national parks and wildlife sanctuaries in India
Parity with Non-Resident Indian in respect of entry fees to be charged for visiting the national monuments, historical sites and museums in India;
Pursuing the following professions in India, in pursuance of the provisions contained in the relevant Acts, namely:-
(a) doctors, dentists, nurses and pharmacists;
(d) chartered accountants;
Parity with Non-Resident Indian to appear for the All India Pre-Medical Test or such other tests to make them eligible for admission in pursuance of the provisions contained in the relevant Acts.
OCI registration booklets are treated as identification for any services rendered to holders by the State Governments. In case proof of residence is required, Overseas Citizens of India may give an affidavit attested by a notary public stating that a particular/specific address may be treated as their place of residence in India and may also in their affidavit give their overseas residential address as well as e-mail address, if any.
Any further benefits to OCIs will be notified by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs (MOIA) under section 7B (1) of the Citizenship Act,1955.
A person registered as OCI is eligible to apply for grant of Indian citizenship under section 5(1) (g) of the Citizenship Act, 1955 if he/she is registered as OCI for five years and has been residing in India for one year out of the preceding five years before making the application.
Who is eligible?
(a) Any person of full age and capacity:
(i) who is a citizen of another country, but was a citizen of India at the time of, or at any time after the commencement of the Constitution; or
(ii) who is a citizen of another country, but was eligible to become a citizen of India at the time of the commencement of the Constitution; or
(iii) who is a citizen of another country, but belonged to a territory that became part of India after the 15th day of August, 1947; or
(iv) who is a child or a grandchild or a great grandchild of such a citizen; or
(b) a person, who is a minor child of a person mentioned in (a) above; or
(c) a person, who is a minor child, and both whose parents are citizens of India or one of the parents is a citizen of India; or
(d) spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India or spouse of foreign origin of an Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder and whose marriage has been registered and subsisted for a continuous period of not less than two years immediately preceding the presentation of the application:
Provided that for the eligibility of registration as an OCI Cardholder, such spouse shall be subjected to prior security clearance by a competent authority in India:
Provided further that no person, who or either of whose parents or grandparents or great grandparents is or had been a citizen of Pakistan, Bangladesh or such other country as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, specify, shall be eligible for registration as an Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder.
Any foreign military personnel either serving or retired is not eligible for OCI card.
Foreign spouse whose Indian spouse has died
Foreign spouse whose Indian spouse is no more can apply for OCI card subject to the condition that the foreign spouse has not re-married another foreigner. In this case, the details of child/children born out of wedlock with the Indian spouse, properties acquired by such married couple in either of their name, etc. are required to be provided by the applicant. It may please be noted that if the foreign national gets remarried to another foreigner after issuance of OCI card, he/she is not eligible for OCI card. In that case, he/she will be required to present him/herself before the Indian Mission/FRRO concerned for cancellation of OCI card. In case of re-marriage to another citizen of India or an OCI cardholder, the person concerned will have to submit fresh application for grant of OCI card.
The foreign national children of such Indian national who is no more are entitled to OCI card as per section 7A of the Citizenship Act, 1955 on the basis of their Indian origin. Such children holding PIO card are also be eligible to apply for OCI card in lieu of PIO card.
Documents that are to be submitted with the application
a) Proof of present citizenship;
b) Evidence of self or parents or grandparents or great grandparents,
(i) being eligible to become a citizen of India at the time of commencement of the Constitution; or
(ii) belonging to a territory that became a part of India after 15th August 1947; or
(iii) being a citizen of India on or after 26th January, 1950
These could be:
(i) Copy of Indian passport; or
(ii) Copy of the domicile certificate issued by the competent authority; or
(iii) Any other proof (may please read below);
c) Evidence of relationship as parent/grandparent, if their Indian origin is claimed as basis for grant of OCI;
d) All other relevant documents and their photocopies that may be helpful in establishing Indian origin which may include, inter alia, revenue records, domicile certificate/school or college leaving certificates, Indian Birth certificate of the applicant and of the parents or grandparents of the applicant etc.; all certificates in the absence of old Indian passport copy require to be Apostilled or attested as the case may be by CPV Division, MEA, Patiala House, New Delhi;
e) In case of a child born in Netherlands, birth certificate and Family Uittereksel issued by respective Gemeente in Netherlands establishing parentage of the child is required to be submitted in addition to the documents mentioned above with regard to establishing ex-Indian nationality of their parents;
f) Original Uitterksel issued by respective Gemeente in Netherlands for residence proof.
g) In case application is for a lost/damage OCI card a fee of € 79 would apply. For other miscellaneous services, viz., change of name, address, requirement of new OCI sticker/booklet in case of obtaining new passport, a fee of € 20 would apply.;
h) Submit proof of residence for more than a year in the area of this Embassy’s jurisdiction in case the application is a non-Dutch passport holder; and
i) Above requirements are only indicative and attempt has been made to cover requirements for a major section of applicants. However, the Consular Officer may ask for additional documents after examining the application for issuance of OCI Card.
Requirements for Dutch nationals of Suriname Origin
As per existing rules, Dutch nationals of Suriname Origin up to fourth generation whose forefathers came from India in 19th century will be eligible for applying for OCI Card. The following documents are to be submitted:
a) Copy of Foreign passport along with original;
b) Duly Apostilled Certificate issued from Ministry of Home Affairs of Government of Suriname regarding Indian origin of ancestors restricted to four generations;
c) Duly attested translated version (in English) of the above certificate issued by Ministry of Home Affairs, Suriname;
d) Original Uittreksel along with photocopy issued by respective Gemeente in Netherlands for residence proof; and
e) Original Family Book issued by Government of Suriname along with photocopy
f) Above requirements are only indicative and attempt has been made to cover requirements for a major section of applicants. However, the Consular Officer may ask for additional documents after examining the application for issuance of OCI Card.
OCI – steps to apply
a) The applicants shall submit the application form online at Online OCI Services website and upload all the requisite documents (self-attested), photograph and signature (in the case of minors who cannot sign, left hand thumb impression) along with the application.
b) After the applicant submits the complete application online including documents, photograph and signature, the originals of the supporting documents have to be submitted to the Service Provider, VFS Global (www.vfsglobal.com/india/netherlands), for prior verification. The Service Provider will be responsible for verifying the supporting documents with the originals.
c) If there is any deficiency in the application/uploaded documents/photograph, the Service Provider shall inform the same to the applicant personally or by email. The applicant may then submit the required documents to the Service Provider, who will take necessary action to upload the same on the online system.
d) After the application is verified by the Service Provider, an auto email will be sent to the applicant informing ‘Application received and is under process’.
OCI - Additional information
(a) While submitting OCI Card applications, applicants are required to ensure that the they have surrendered their Indian passports or give satisfactory written explanations duly notarized or legalized (Notaris or Legalizeren)/documents relating to loss or damage of passports; submission to foreign authorities at the time of becoming a foreign national; or even non-possession of a passport.
(b) It may be noted that the penalty charges will be made applicable only for passports whose final validity expired on or after 1st January 2005. If any passport that expired prior to this date (and was not re-issued) is surrendered, only the Surrender certificate fee will be collected.
Nativity Certificate for OCI Card applicants
‘Nativity Certificate’ issued by a State Government in India by an authority not below a District Collector/ District Magistrate about an applicant being Person of Indian Origin eligible for registration as OCI may also be submitted for consideration of issue of OCI cards.
A copy of sample ‘Nativity Certificate’ application format along with copy of sample ‘Nativity Certificate’ can be seen here.
Photo Specifications for OCI Applications
Based upon the specifications of the International Standards Organization (ISO) and ICAO, which is responsible for standardizing travel documents, the requirements related to photograph (specifications at https://passport.gov.in/oci/Photo-Spec-FINAL.pdf) for OCI Cards are listed below:
The photo should be in colour and of the size 2 inch x 2 inch (51 mm x 51 mm).
The face must be taken from a full frontal position and the height of the face must meet the prescribed specifications.
The eyes must be open, level and clearly visible within the indicated area.
The face should be centred within the frame. The face should be 70 to 80% of the photo.
The photo should be clear and with a continuous-tone quality.
The background should be a plain white or off-white and there should not be any distracting shadows on the face or on the background.
The photo should have full face, front view, eyes open and should present full head from top of hair to bottom of chin.
Head coverings are not permitted except for religious reasons, but the facial features from bottom of chin to top of forehead and both edges of the face must be clearly shown.
Prescription glasses if worn should be clear and thin framed and should not have flash reflection or eyes obscured.
Red eyed photos are not allowed.
The photo should be ideally printed by a professional photo studio. Polaroid photos or photos printed with ordinary printers will not be suitable for scanning. Applicants are, therefore, advised to submit the photographs as specified, to avoid delay in processing their passport applications.
Fee Structure for OCI Card
Fresh OCI Card for all ages
PIO card to OCI card
Free. However the applicants will have to pay the service charges of the outsourcing agency.
Minor - PIO card to OCI card
Free. However the applicants will have to pay the service charges of the outsourcing agency.
OCI Miscellaneous service
(a) Re-issuance of OCI Card
(b) Issuance of duplicate OCI card in case of Loss/Damage of OCI documents