This is to inform that vide Gazette Notification No.26011/01/2014IC.I dated 09.01.2015 all PIO cards issued till 09.01.2015 are deemed to be OCI card. PIO Card scheme has been withdrawn vide Gazette Notification No.25024/9/2014-F.I dated 09.01.2015.. Henceforth, applicants may apply forOCI card ONLY, as PIO card scheme is no longer in existence.
This is to inform that the date of submission of online applications by the erstwhile PIO cardholders with valid PIO cards as on 09 January 2015for registration as OCI cardholder in lieu of PIO card has been extended till 31.3.2016 by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. The cutoff date will be only for submission of the applications online by the applicants.
As on date, all PIO card holders are deemed to be OCI cardholders in terms of the notification issued by the MHA on 9th January, 2015.
The entire OCI application and processing system, including the submission of the application, uploading the requisite documents and payment of fee will be brought online by 31.7.2015 by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, The erstwhile PIO cardholder with a valid PIO Card as on 9.1.2015 will have to upload only the following documents with his/her application:
(a) copy of the valid Passport
(b) copy of the PIO Card
The applicants can submit the applications online from anywhere. The grant of OCI card in lieu of the PIO card will be on a gratis basis and no fee shall be payable by the applicant. However, the applicants may have to bear the ICWF fee.
The OCI card shall be issued by the Indian Mission/Post/FRRO concerned within the jurisdiction of the applicant’s place of residence. The applicant will have to approach the Indian Mission/Post/FRRO concerned only for collecting the OCI Card by surrendering the PIO card.
OCI card is a smart card which will facilitate quicker immigration clearance at the Immigration counters in India. Therefore, PIO cardholders are advised to apply for OCI card in lieu of PIO card before 31.3.2016 at http://passport.gov.in/oci/ . PIO cardholder can travel to India on the basis of their valid PIO card and valid foreign passport.
In cases of erstwhile PIO cardholders, the new foreign passport number (when they get a new passport) will be endorsed on the existing PIO card till the person concerned is issued an OCI card in lieu of PIO card.