Home | Site Map | Contact us  
Indian Immigration Requirements

Visas to enter India

U.S. citizens require a passport and visa to both enter and exit India.  Visitors, including those on official U.S. government business, must obtain visas at an Indian embassy or consulate abroad prior to entering the country as there are no provisions for visas upon arrival.  Those arriving without a visa are subject to immediate deportation.  The U.S. embassy and consulates in India are unable to assist when U.S. citizens arrive without visas.  Travelers seeking to entered restricted areas of India require special permits, in addition to valid visas.  More information on visiting these restricted areas is available here.  For the most current information on entry requirements, please contact the nearest Indian embassy or consulate.

Each visitor should carry photocopies of the face page of the traveler’s U.S. passport and the page which contains the Indian visa in order to facilitate obtaining a replacement U.S. passport from the U.S. embassy or consulate and an exit visa from the Indian government, in the event of theft or loss of the passport.

Please note that an American citizen whose primary purpose of travel is to participate in religious activities should obtain a missionary visa rather than a tourist visa.  Indian immigration authorities have deported American citizens who were conducting religious activities while holding a tourist visa.

Registering your visit

Foreign citizens who visit India to study, do research, work, or act as missionaries, as well as all travelers planning to stay more than 180 days, are required to register within 14 days of arrival with the Foreigners Regional Registration Office where they will be staying. The FRRO maintains offices in New Delhi, Mumbai (Bombay), Chennai (Madras), Kolkata (Calcutta), and Amritsar.  In smaller cities and towns, the local police headquarters normally perform this function. The address and telephone number of each major FRRO office can be found here.  General information regarding Indian visa and immigration rules can be found at the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs' Bureau of Immigration website.

The FRRO Mumbai office is open Monday Through Friday between 10.00 a.m. to 2.00 p.m. for processing of registration and extension papers and on every 1st, 3rd and 5th Saturday’s till 1:00 p.m. You may also register online at website:  http://wesra.in/FRRO

Dual nationality

In 2003, India passed a bill that allows certain persons of Indian origin in sixteen countries (subsequently extended to almost all countries), including the United States, to apply for a form of dual citizenship known as “Overseas Citizenship of India” (OCI).  On January 7, 2006, the Government of India issued the first OCI certificate and released the regulations governing applications for OCI status.  Persons with OCI status may not vote in Indian elections, hold most government jobs, or purchase certain types of real estate.  However, they are free from most visa and registration requirements and receive other rights.  Interested parties may view information on Overseas Citizenship of India and how to apply for it here.

Any person who is considered to have dual nationality as a citizen of both India and the U.S. is subject to all Indian laws while in India.  Moreover, a dual national also may be subject to other laws and regulations that impose special obligations on Indian citizens, such as taxation.  In some instances such as arrest while in India, dual nationality may hamper U.S. Government efforts to provide assistance abroad.  For more information on the official U.S. Government position on the issue of dual nationality, please visit this website.

Home | Site Map | Contact us | Copyright 2009 by CTBUH