This post was originally published on 8 January 2017.
Government of India has decided to extend the deadline for conversion of Person of Indian Origin (PIO) card to Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) card up to June 30 2017, free of charge.
This is for the second time that the deadline for conversion PIO to OCI has been extended. Earlier, the Government had decided to extend the last date for applying for conversion cards from June 30 to December 31.
Difference between PIO and OCI cards
A Person of Indian Origin (PIO) card allows visa-free travel and entitles the cardholder to several benefits.
- Whereas an Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) is a multiple entry life-long visa which enables the holder to have unlimited travel and stay in India.
- OCI cardholders will enjoy all rights and privileges available to Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) in financial, economic and educational fields except in the acquisition of plantation properties.
There would be no visa requirement for travel to India and they would have to carry their existing passport along with the registration certificate.
They will also not be required to register with the FRRO/Police authorities for any length of stay in India.
Only copies of a valid passport and a valid PIO Card of the applicant are to be produced by those who wish to convert their PIO cards to OCI.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced that the PIO and OCI cards will be merged and the Indian diaspora will be given the maximum possible benefits.