Visas granted to foreigners and all incoming passenger traffic to remain suspended till May 3

NetIndian News Network

New Delhi, April 18, 2020

In view of the extension of the nationwide lockdown, imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, till May 3, the Union Ministry for Home Affairs (MHA) has decided to extend the suspension of all existing visas granted to foreigners, except to those belonging to diplomatic, official, UN/international organizations, employment and project categories, till that date.

MHA has further directed that all incoming passenger traffic into India through any of the 107 Immigration Check Posts shall remain suspended till May 3.

However, no such restriction would apply to vehicles, planes, ships, conveyance, trains etc. carrying any goods and supplies whether essential or non-essential. Their crew, sailor, driver, helper, cleaner etc. shall be subjected to thorough medical screening for COVID-19, an official press release said.

The MHA has also decided to extend till May 3 the provision of various consular services by the Office of Foreigners Regional Registration Officers/ Foreigners Registration Officers to foreign nationals, presently stranded in India.

The Ministry had earlier, on March 28, granted consular services on gratis basis to foreign nationals, presently residing in India due to travel restrictions in the context of COVID-19 outbreak, till April 30.

Regular visa, e-visa or stay stipulation, of such foreign nationals who have been stranded in India because of spread of COVID-19 in many parts of the world and also due to travel restrictions imposed by the Indian authorities and whose visas have expired or would be expiring during the period from 01.02.2020 (Midnight) to 03.05.2020 (Midnight), would be extended till midnight of 03.05.2020 on gratis basis, after the foreigner makes an online application.

Exit to such foreign nationals, if so requested by them during this period, will also be granted to them upto 14 days beyond 03.05.2020 i.e. 17.05.2020 without levy of overstay penalty, the release said.