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FAQs on OCI Services

FAQ’s ON OCI (03/11/2021)

1. What is the procedure and documents required to apply for an OCI Registration?

Ans: Application for registration as OCI is to be made online through the website of the Ministry of Home Affairs at  https://www.ociservices.gov.in/ . Instructions therein may be perused carefully, particularly with respect to supporting documents required so that there is no mistake in submission of the application. Once the application form has been filed online, copy of the printout of the same is required to be submitted at our Authorised Service Centres. Please note that submission for OCI registration is via appointment only. Please book your appointment for submission at  www.blsindia.sg .

2. Can one apply for an OCI Card on spouse basis?

Ans: An applicant can apply for OCI Registration under the category of spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India or spouse of foreign origin of an Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) Cardholder and whose marriage has been registered and subsisted for a continuous period of not less than two years immediately preceding the presentation of the application. It is advised to include/add spouse name in the passports/ OCI Card, where possible, for smooth processing of the application. A sponsor letter by the Spouse of Indian Origin is to be furnished along with the OCI application. Applicants who are of Indian origin are advised to apply for the OCI Card on their own merit and not on spouse basis.

3. Is an OCI cardholder a citizen of India?

Ans: The OCI Cardholder is a foreign national holding a passport of a foreign country and is NOT a Citizen of India.

4. I just turned 20yrs, and had my OCI issued to me when I was 17 years. Should I get my OCI card re- issued? I have since been issued with a new passport.

Ans: Yes. OCI registration certificate has got to be re-issued only once when a new passport is issued after completion of 20 years of age.
OCI Miscellaneous services have been made available on the Ministry's website  https://www.ociservices.gov.in/  and can be availed by applying online and submitting hard copy of the application along with the requisite fee, photograph and enclosures to the Authorised Service Centres. Submission at the appointment centres is via appointment only. Appointments may be booked online at – www.blsindia.sg

5. Under what circumstances should existing OCI Cardholders apply for Re-issue of their OCI Cards?

Ans: Existing OCI Cardholders may apply for Re-issuance of their OCI Cards in the following contingencies: -

Reason for Service

Option to be Selected at OCI Web Portal

For change of passport after attaining 20 years of age

Select “Change of Passport Particulars” Option

For Lost/ Damaged OCI Booklet and all other particulars remaining the same

Select “Lost/ Damaged OCI Booklet” Option

For Change of name/ nationality and/or change of passport/address/lost/damaged etc.

Select “Change of Personal Particulars” option

6. After renewing my passport, do I have to carry my old passport along with the OCI card while travelling?

Ans: The requirement of carrying old passports, along with the OCI card, has been done away with. Henceforth, an OCI Cardholder travelling on the strength of existing OCI card bearing old passport number is not required to carry the old passport. However, carrying the new (current) passport is mandatory. This is applicable in cases where there is no change in Personal particulars and nationality.

7. I just turned 50 years. Should I get my OCI Card Re-issued? I understand that I only need to update my particulars at the OCI Web Portal? Is my understanding correct?

Ans: Mandatory requirement of re-issuance of an OCI card each time a new passport is issued to a foreigner upto 20 years of age and once after completing 50 years of age is dispensed with. An OCI Cardholder is now only required to upload a copy of the new passport containing the photo of the OCI Cardholder and a latest photo on the online system under OCI Miscellaneous Services each time a new passport is issued upto 20 years of age and once after completing 50 years of age. The OCI web portal has been suitably modified under “OCI Miscellaneous Services” to facilitate OCI Cardholders to update details of new Passport and change of address Online. These documents may be uploaded by the OCI Cardholder within three months of receipt of the new passport. This service will be provided on Gratis basis. Existing OCI Cardholders may apply for Online updation of their particulars in the following contingencies:

Reason for Service

Option to be Selected at OCI Web Portal

For change of passport before 20 years of age or for change of passport after 50 years of age

Select “Change of Passport Particulars Option” Only

For change of address/ Occupation

Select “Change of Address/ Occupation” Option only

8. What is the procedure for Online updation of Passport particulars and address change in the recently launched Online Web Portal?

Ans : Detailed instructions to fill the Online Application form and other requirements may be accessed at the MHA website – https://ociservices.gov.in/welcome. The procedure to avail of OCI Miscellaneous Services (Gratis) are -

a.Applicant may apply online on https://ociservices.gov.in and opt for passport/address updation service under the OCI Miscellaneous Services, upload photograph and required documents. These documents may be uploaded by the OCI Cardholder within three months of receipt of the new passport. This service will be provided on Gratis basis.

b.An auto email is sent to the applicant for successful upload of documents.

c.Once the application is granted by the Ministry, details of the new passport, address and contact, as the case may be, get updated in OCI records and an auto email is sent to the applicant informing that changes have been made in his/ her OCI records. This will normally take approx 35-40 days since receipt of acknowledgement of the OCI application on their e-mail.

d.Applicants are advised to await updates on their e-mail directly from the Ministry. No physical copy of OCI will be sent/ provided by the mission.

e.Applicant may check status of their applications online on https://ociservices.gov.in under the “Status Enquiry” section.

f.In the interim, should applicants require to travel to India, they may do so on the strength of their OCI Card and current new passport (provided there are no changes in personal particulars).

9. I would like to inquire regarding the Status of my OCI application which I had done at BLS Singapore more than 2 months ago. Till now I have not received any information on it. How will I know if my OCI is ready for collection? Could you please guide me.

Ans: Please note that OCI cards processing takes about 6-8 weeks, under normal circumstances. The period may be longer due to Covid-19 related problem. For OCI Status Enquiry, please visit the OCI website- www.ociservices.gov.in Click on the Option of OCI- Enquiry and enter your Passport Number and File Reference Number which you will receive in your e-mail after successful registration. A hard copy is also sent by BLS to your address, containing all the details. Once it shows that your OCI card has been received in Singapore, you may collect the OCI Card after 2 working days from the date of receipt. If you are unable to view your status online, you may contact BLS regarding your application at their e-mail - infosg@blsinternational.net or email the High Commission at madad.singapore@gmail.com

10. I have noticed that my online updation of Passport particulars has been updated as I have received acknowledgement email from MHA. May I check on the next steps and if I will be issued with a new card?

Ans. Once Applicants receive email acknowledgement from MHA confirming their particulars have been taken on record, the procedure is complete. No physical copy of OCI will be sent/ provided by the mission. This process typically takes 35-40 days from the date of Acknowledgement by Mission. Applicants may continue using their current OCI Cards along with their current new passport for travel to India.

11. I have just renounced my Indian Citizenship and have applied for my OCI card registration. Will my (pre-existing) PAN card number continue to be usable by me under the OCI status?

Ans: As your Indian PAN Card was issued to you as an Indian national, hence after renunciation of Indian citizenship you may check for getting it changed with the relevant issuing/ controlling authorities in India. For other documents too you may directly contact the issuing authorities for change of nationality details.

12. Can I undertake journalism in India as an OCI Cardholder?

Ans: OCI Cardholders are required to obtain Special Permission from concerned authorities to undertake certain activities in India. In order to make it convenient to such OCI Cardholders, a separate sub-portal under the name “Apply for Special Permission (Only for OCI Cardholders)” has been created in the Online OCI web portal at –  https://ociservices.gov.in/welcome. The link has detailed instructions as well as documents required to be submitted. The link would facilitate such OCI cardholders to apply for Special Permission.

13. What is the procedure to collect my OCI Card? Can I authorise my family members to collect the OCI Card on my behalf?

Ans. On completion of preparation of the OCI document, the applicant is required to be present in person with original receipts (provided by BLS and received through courier both) along with his/her foreign passport, PIO card/ OCI Card (if any) for collection of the OCI documents. Applicants are advised to check status of their OCI applications at the OCI website – https://www.ociservices.gov.in/. If status shows that OCI Card has been received in Singapore, applicants are advised to give 2 more working days, before proceeding to HCI for collection. Immediate family members can collect on behalf of other family members, if they have applied together. No OCI document will be sent by Dak/ Post or Mail.  OCI Cards will not be issued to applicants who are out of Singapore at the time of collection.

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