Important Notice about PIO Card scheme
In terms of Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India Notification No. 25024/9/2014-F.1 dated 9th January, 2015 all the existing PIO (Person of Indian Origin) card-holders shall be deemed to be OCI (Overseas Citizen of India) card-holders with effect from 9th January, 2015.
Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) Card Scheme
Launched on March 30, 1999 by the Government of India, Persons of Indian Origin (PIO) up to the fourth generation (great grandparents settled throughout the world except citizens of Pakistan and other countries as may be specified by the Govt. of India from time to time) are eligible for PIO cards. Basic features of the scheme are as under:
New Rules for PIO:
Effective 30th September 2014 - as per the Notification of the Ministry of Home Affairs, the PIO Rules have changed:
A PIO Card issued to an applicant shall be valid for his lifetime from the date of its issue provided that such applicant has a valid US or Foreign Passport.
The above condition is valid for existing PIO Cards and as well as New PIO Cards issued post 30th September 2014.
Benefits available to PIO Card holder
A PIO Card holder shall not require a separate visa to visit India. The PIO card holders will not require "student visas" for undertaking studies in India and similarly no "employment visa" will be required for taking up employment in India. However, they will be required to fulfill other prerequisite conditions and formalities in connection with their studies/employment as prescribed by the concerned authorities from time to time.
All PIOs including PIO card holders shall enjoy parity with NRIs in respect of all facilities available to the latter in the economic, financial and educational fields except in matters relating to the acquisition of agricultural/plantation properties. No parity shall be allowed in the sphere of political rights.
An application for issue/renewal of a PIO card shall be made in the prescribed form (download form) and shall be accompanied by documentary evidence to show that the applicant is a person of Indian origin. An application for issue of a PIO card shall be made to Consulate General of India, Shanghai if the applicant is ordinarily resident in its jurisdictional area. Applicants already in India on long-term visa shall make the application for issue of a PIO card to the following authorities:
Those residing in:
Level-II, East Block VIII,
R.K. Puram, Sector-I
Commissioner of Police,
237, Acharya Jagdish Chandra Bose Road,
Chief Immigration Officer, Bureau of Immigration,
Shastri Bhavan Annexe,
No.26, Haddows Road,
Additional Dy. Director,
Bureau of Immigration,
B/123 Ranjeet Avenue, Amritsar.
Those residing in areas other than the above shall submit the application to:
Joint Secretary (Foreigners),
Ministry of Home Affairs,
Ist floor, Lok Nayak Bhavan,
A PIO Card shall be valid for life-time of the holder subject to holding a valid passport.
Besides the nationals of Pakistan and Bangladesh, the nationals of Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Bhutan, Nepal, Iran, China and any other country specified by the Govt. of India shall not be eligible for issue of PIO Card. Further, if the applicant himself or either of his parents, grandparents or great grandparents held the nationality of these specified countries at any time, he will not be granted the PIO Card. Stateless persons holding identity/travel documents shall not be eligible for grant of PIO Cards. Iranian nationals of Indian origin can be considered for grant of PIO card after the issuing authority obtains prior clearance from the Ministry of Home Affairs, India.
Cancellation of PIO Card
Fee payable for obtaining the PIO Card
The fee for a PIO card would be Rs.15000/- (equivalent in local currency of the country) payable along with the application. PIO card to children up to the age of 18 yrs will be issued at a fee of Rs.7500/- (equivalent in local currency) for a 15-year card. PIO cards issued earlier (as per the PIO card scheme, 1999) for US $ 1000 will continue to remain valid and no refund shall be admissible. However, the validity of such cards shall be extendable by 10 yrs without charging any fee.