Renunciation of Indian Citizenship and Applying for OCI Card from USA and Canada
Indian Origin American and Canadian citizens and their families can apply for the OCI Card (Overseas Citizenship Card of India) to obtain multiple benefits, including the lifetime visa to visit and work in India. Many Indian origin citizens who have acquired citizenship of the USA or Canada, however, are not aware of the benefits and how to apply for OCI card in the USA and Canada.
The renunciation of Indian passport is mandatory to apply for an Indian OCI Card because the constitution of India does not allow dual citizenship. The OCI Card Application and the application for renunciation of Indian citizenship cannot be processed together, first, they need to apply for renunciation which takes 10-15 working days. After receiving the Renunciation/Surrender Certificate and stamped Indian Passport, they can apply for OCI Card.
Individuals who have lost or lost their Indian passport and therefore do not have their Indian passport to hand over for cancellation, receive a “Renunciation Declaration Certificate” based on the presentation of a sworn affidavit of the lost Indian passport and other required documents.
After canceling their Indian passport, they will normally be required to obtain an Indian visa, if they want to travel to India and will be treated as a foreigner and must complete all immigration formalities, including registration to local police stations.
The OCI card holder can make visa-free trips to India at any time with an undetermined length of stay, and they do not need to report to the local police station.
During the COVID-19 period, the Indian Government has suspended its Visa services worldwide, but the OCI Card holder can travel to India because they do not require the visa, which resulted in a large number of OCI Card Applications from the United States, Canada and other countries. More OCI cards are being issued than ever before. The OCI Card application process in the US has been simplified and the eligibility requirements for the OCI Card are not very strict.
The OCI Card Application or OCI Card renewal usually takes 8-10 weeks, but it is observed that if the application is filled correctly and all requirements are fulfilled, the OCI Card will be received within 6 weeks.
The Indian authorities in the USA and Canada do not accept direct applications and applicants need to apply through the VFS Global Application Centers for OCI Card, Citizenship Renunciation and Indian Passport Renewal in USA and Canada.
The fee of the Government of India is US$275 for the application or renewal of the OCI Card, and the applicant must pay a total VFS fee of US$15.90 and the contribution to the Community Welfare Fund of India of US$3.
Minor child whose mother and father or one of the parents is a citizen of India or the wife/husband of foreign origin of an Indian citizen or wife/husband of foreign origin of an OCI Card holder can apply for OCI Card.
An Individual, who is or if his or her parent, grandparents or great-grandparents are or were citizens of the Pakistan and Bangladesh is not eligible to apply for OCI card.
Note: With effect from November 2020 the VFS Global is the service provider for the Embassy of India in the USA and Canada. The contract between the Government of India and CKGS has been ended in October 2020.
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