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India suspends all visas until April 15th

India suspends all visas until April 15th

Old Mar 11, 20, 2:25 pm
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India suspends all visas until April 15th

https://www.indiatoday.in/india/stor...590-2020-03-11

"All existing visas, except diplomatic, official, UN/International organisations, employment and project visas stand suspended till 15th April 2020. This will come into effect from 1200GMT on 13th March 2020 at the port of departure," the statement said.

Visa-free travel facility granted to OCI cardholders is also kept in abeyance till April 15.
I was planning on going mid-April. Guess I'll hold off until further updates. My worry is what happens if my octogenarian parents who live in India fall ill and we can't travel there.

Does anyone know what happens to OCI holders who are currently in India?

Last edited by Shounak; Mar 11, 20 at 2:29 pm Reason: Grammar!
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Old Mar 11, 20, 2:36 pm
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Originally Posted by Shounak View Post
My worry is what happens if my octogenarian parents who live in India fall ill and we can't travel there.

Does anyone know what happens to OCI holders who are currently in India?
In one of the news reports about this there was something about anyone with a "compelling reason to visit India" needing to contact the Indian consulate near them. Presumably an exception can be made in an emergency case such as with elderly parents falling ill.

As the notification is only about suspending travel for OCIs and others until April 15, it should be safe to assume that OCI holders already in India just stay put. There are quite a few who live in India and are not just visiting - it's not like they can be thrown out on a whim!

I think it is strange that an exception has been carved out for employment and project visas, but not for OCI holders.If anything it could be argued that OCI holders have a stronger claim to enter and work in India than those on employment and project visas.
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Old Mar 11, 20, 2:43 pm
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Wow. It is nuts that OCI is not "visa free" at this moment in time.
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Old Mar 11, 20, 2:45 pm
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Originally Posted by Bandicoot View Post
In one of the news reports about this there was something about anyone with a "compelling reason to visit India" needing to contact the Indian consulate near them. Presumably an exception can be made in an emergency case such as with elderly parents falling ill.
But wouldn't that trigger a 14 day quarantine?
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Old Mar 11, 20, 3:02 pm
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Originally Posted by Shounak View Post
https://www.indiatoday.in/india/stor...590-2020-03-11

I was planning on going mid-April. Guess I'll hold off until further updates. My worry is what happens if my octogenarian parents who live in India fall ill and we can't travel there.

Does anyone know what happens to OCI holders who are currently in India?
If they are already in India, then this really isn’t applicable to them. But if they leave India, then they are generally going to be in the same boat as someone with just a short term tourist visa.

For an OCI wanting an emergency exception, maybe it’s possible to get it .... but don’t count on it always being possible in the most timely manner needed.
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Old Mar 11, 20, 3:06 pm
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Originally Posted by Shounak View Post
But wouldn't that trigger a 14 day quarantine?
Not automatically, I think. It says you are subject to medical screening and "can", not "shall" be quarantined.

(assuming you haven't visited China, Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, France, Spain and Germany since Feb 15.)
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Old Mar 11, 20, 5:13 pm
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Originally Posted by ft4lyf View Post
Wow. It is nuts that OCI is not "visa free" at this moment in time.
Yes, it is completely nuts, because someone with an OCI can legitimately have their permanent (and only) residence in India and might have been traveling outside India for some short-term reason like tourism. Now, they're stuck outside India with no way to go home.

At least project and employment visa holders do have a home somewhere outside India that they can go to, even if it's disruptive to their plans. Strange that they're still allowed to enter India now.
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Old Mar 11, 20, 5:25 pm
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Originally Posted by Bandicoot View Post
Yes, it is completely nuts, because someone with an OCI can legitimately have their permanent (and only) residence in India and might have been traveling outside India for some short-term reason like tourism. Now, they're stuck outside India with no way to go home.

At least project and employment visa holders do have a home somewhere outside India that they can go to, even if it's disruptive to their plans. Strange that they're still allowed to enter India now.
You are right about the permanent residence situation for OCI. I did not analyze it that way.
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Old Mar 12, 20, 7:21 am
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just give it a few days & they will tweak the rules....its all very new at the moment....with trump banning people from europe, italy closing their borders, india suspending visas, there will be a lot more countries that will impose similar restrictions....i'm sure most will be relaxed or changed as the days go on....
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Old Mar 13, 20, 6:10 am
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Just wondering, since the quarantine rule says "have visited China, Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, France, Spain and Germany since Feb 15", does that apply to transit pax as well?

e.g., if one is flying LH from the US to India and connects through FRA or MUC without leaving international transit area, does that still count as "visiting" and trigger the mandatory quarantine?

From a practical sense, since you've physically been in Germany it seems the quarantine rule should apply but wondering if they're actually doing that. If so, demand for nonstop flights or those connecting through the mideast or UK will jump appreciably.
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Old Mar 13, 20, 6:42 am
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Originally Posted by Maxwell Smart View Post
Just wondering, since the quarantine rule says "have visited China, Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, France, Spain and Germany since Feb 15", does that apply to transit pax as well?

e.g., if one is flying LH from the US to India and connects through FRA or MUC without leaving international transit area, does that still count as "visiting" and trigger the mandatory quarantine?

From a practical sense, since you've physically been in Germany it seems the quarantine rule should apply but wondering if they're actually doing that. If so, demand for nonstop flights or those connecting through the mideast or UK will jump appreciably.
i connected via cdg earlier this week....mentioned that on my form....they didn't say anything at the airport....
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Old Mar 15, 20, 10:04 am
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Originally Posted by Maxwell Smart View Post
Just wondering, since the quarantine rule says "have visited China, Italy, Iran, Republic of Korea, France, Spain and Germany since Feb 15", does that apply to transit pax as well?

e.g., if one is flying LH from the US to India and connects through FRA or MUC without leaving international transit area, does that still count as "visiting" and trigger the mandatory quarantine?

From a practical sense, since you've physically been in Germany it seems the quarantine rule should apply but wondering if they're actually doing that. If so, demand for nonstop flights or those connecting through the mideast or UK will jump appreciably.
I think the Indian officials and airlines' will be trying to figure out what all this means and more importantly how it applies. And a lot of the rules will get refined as things play out.

Also the quarantine is a home/hotel quarantine... and health officials come to check in on you very often. You're not stuck in a govt. hospital or similar area unless you have really bad symptoms or test positive.

Also very technically, transiting is not traveling to or visiting.
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Old Mar 15, 20, 8:37 pm
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From the official FAQ:

"Whether Indians transiting through China, Republic of Korea, Iran, Italy, Spain, France and Germany be quarantined on arrival in India? No. Transit through Airport is not considered stay."

https://boi.gov.in/sites/default/fil...q-covid-19.pdf

Note this only refers to mandatory quarantine.
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Old Mar 16, 20, 12:59 pm
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An udpate today - From March-18 till March-31
Europe and Turkey flights banned!

https://indianexpress.com/article/co...india-6317393/

If you arrive from / Transit via Gulf Countries - Then 14 day quarantine upon arrival in India (Source is the same webpage above)
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Old Mar 16, 20, 4:54 pm
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Can someone clarify whether, if you transit through Doha or Dubai from the US, the quarantine will be imposed upon arrival in India or needs to be undertaken in the US? I'm really confused as to what "port of first departure" means in this context. It seems that travelers from Italy or France have just been quarantined upon reaching India, but the new rules make it sound like they need to be quarantined before even boarding the plane.

My parents are currently visiting with me in Boston in the US and have been here since early Feb. They were planning to return towards the end of April but all these travel restrictions have us worried. At the same time, we don't want to act hastily and land them in a bigger mess.
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