India Announces Relief for Smooth Travel of OCI Card Holders below 20 and above 50 Years of Age

Several airlines denying boarding to certain passengers below 20 or above 50 years of age for not having a new OCI card, in compliance with Indian government’s enforcement of the latest OCI card validity policy, stirred agitation among the foreign citizens of Indian origin in the United States, Europe, Australia, Singapore, New Zealand and the Middle East.

“Inadequate awareness about the sudden enforcement of the OCI card renewal rules which have been in place for years resulted in a mounting number of trip cancellations and cases of harassment at origin airports or during transit at connecting airports including Dubai, Doha, Singapore and France. We received an influx of requests from OCI card holders for their reservation cancellation over the past few weeks,” said the chief customer relations officer of IndianEagle.com, a leading air-ticketing organization in USA.

OCI card news, OCI card renewal rules, OCI card validity

However, there is a major relief for Overseas Citizens of India with renewed passports but old OCI cards. The rigid enforcement of the OCI validity and renewal policy by immigration authorities and airline officials has been relaxed to ensure smooth travel to India till June 30, 2020. OCI card holders, who are either below 20 or above 50 years of age, can continue to take flights to India with their new passports and old OCI cards until June 30, 2020. At the same time, they are required to carry their old cancelled passport.

Yesterday, the Foreigners Division of the Home Ministry issued a directive ordering government agencies and airlines to lift the enforcement for hassle-free travel of children and senior citizens among the OCI card holders worldwide. It is a welcome relief as long as they possess the old cancelled passport.

In case OCI card holders below 20 or above 50 years forget to carry or fail to produce their old cancelled passport while traveling to India, they will be denied boarding. However, re-issuance of OCI card at the time of passport renewal for those below 20 or above 50 is a mandatory requirement that they must fulfill by June 30, 2020.

On seeing reports of massive inconvenience caused to children and senior citizens among the OCI card holders, several Indian-origin leaders including Indian American Prem Bhandari raised the issue to Harsh Vardhan Shringla, Indian ambassador to the US, and the Civil Aviation Ministry of India, according to PTI.

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17 thoughts on “India Announces Relief for Smooth Travel of OCI Card Holders below 20 and above 50 Years of Age

  1. Mayur

    There is no clarity and mass NRIs are confused.
    Indian government should make it simple rule to avoid inconvenience and harassment
    Copy of notification should be available online or on Foreign Ministry’s website.
    It creates bad impression of red tapism.

    Reply
  2. jayant k vodela

    Indian government is won’t let passenger board plane, when overstaed in India after expiring Indian visa. They can enforce penalty at airport and let them board the plane. I sincerely appreciate if u take this issue to Indian government authority

    Reply
  3. Dharmbharati

    Not sure what the GOI is trying to achieve by harassing children and old people by these OCI rules? The demonetization, GST, Citizenship row etc are wasting the nation’s time and attention. Looks like the positions of officials have been filled with psychos.

    Reply
    • Ramchandra

      You have gotten used to American lifestyle and cannot deal with Indian problems!! That’s all! Even basic traffic in US makes us feel like terrible things have happened. Remember, millions and millions deal with such things in India daily. So please remember your patience that you had during your days in India. This is just minor inconvenience,

      Reply
  4. Alok Kumar

    policies should be clear and the one that makes sense. OCI card is issued for life.
    So, why is it connected to a passport is not clear. Any passport number should not be listed on OCI card.
    And if listed, the need to get it updated every time a passport is renewed, should be waived for all OCI card holders irrespective of age.
    If a renewal is necessary, it should be automatic via filing the new, updated, info online.

    Reply
    • Mahendra Patl

      Your suggestion in correct. Like updating other information can be updated the new passport information can be updated on line. This will avoid lots of aggravation going to OCI office or mailing because OCI offices are wher parking is big issue, waiting for your number in line, travling for long distance in heavi traffic. By mailing OCI office lost of passport or sending back wrong passport. I have received wrong passport & OCI card from OCI office in New York.

      Reply
    • Satish

      Yes, if we need to update OCI booklet with new passport number, procedure need to be simplified. Like sticker that will be genetrated online can be afffix to original OCI booklet.

      Reply
    • Subbarao Kari

      I fully agree with what you are saying. When OCI is for life why renew it. If they want to get new photos for children/elderly they should state that reason. No where they say that. It takes long time to get OCI renewed. Also how do people know all these rule changes? especially when OCI is for life is printed on it.

      Reply
  5. Deepak rawat

    This is typical Indian way of doing things. They enforce the law suddenly and then sit and watch the fiasco.
    In this article they talked about this deadline “June 30, 2020” but there is no mention of that on the web page for
    “OCI card renewal rules” (this link is provided in this article itself).
    Indians are good workers but very poor managers – sorry, that’s what I see every where.

    Reply
  6. Raj

    Recently, hearing of these issues as applied to children travelling with their parents, several people I know just applied for a e-visa for the child few days before the planned trip.
    Since the OCI portion wasnt even brought up, they had no issues completing their trips!
    I agree having to do this despite the OCI being present is ridiculous though! The OCI replacement procedure is so slow and painful, that its just seemingly not worth it, especially for kids who have to renew their main passport every 5 years….as such by they time they reach 20 years, they will have to apply for a new OCI 4 times! Really? Minor children of NRI’s who were born abroad need to go through this procedure?

    Reply
  7. Tulsi K

    Renewal is not as simple as it sounds, one will have to make a trip to bank to arrange payment as they DO NOT accept credit card or personal checks. Following is what I found when I tried to submit online application to mail in for renewal in New York.
    “Payments must be made by Money order/Pay order /Cashiers/ Bankers check favoring “Cox and Kings Global Services USA LLC”.

    Reply
  8. Ed De

    Dear Indian Government, How about you just take money every 5 years but spare us the hassle and stress of renewing these OCIs over and over just to reflect a new password number or a new address on the same piece of paper.

    Have you ever considered a simple database update to reflect a new passport number or address in your records instead of repeatedly canceling and reissuing new OCIs every few years for each NRI, young or old.

    You, anyways, validate everything at the port of entry. So why is this not a practical solution?

    You can keep ripping us off with these application fees for every database update while we are happy to win our sanity back.

    Reply
  9. Rajan

    Cox & Kings on their website have screen shots – but these screenshots are not the same as the Government website ? – why the disconnect ?

    Reply
  10. PERMINDER BHATIA

    The application is too complicated. Its more simple to get USA passport renewal, then OCI renewal. I have been rejected 3 time on Minor issues- You missed middle name in your wife’s name etc. They need to make it simple. Send old OCI send fees and new passport and simple application.

    Reply
  11. Bhalchandra S. Pandya

    When so many travelers from so many countries are traveling to India with new passport and OCI stamped passport, why they have to go through the harassment. The old passport with OCI stamp and new passport should be allowed till new passport expires. Even than OCI is for life time why need to be made again? Make it easy so more Indians can travel to their mother land. Sad that we are still using 19th century thoughts. Hope some one will pay attention in politics or in authority.

    Reply
  12. Raj

    I can’t figure out since I have renewed my USA Passport, if I need to get my OCI card also renewed. I thought OCI card was for life, why confusing it now in such a way? also the age implications are so confusing, you don’t know whether you need to do anything or not. Why not put a questioner where you plug in your OCI card number, date of birth and the result lets you know what to do next?

    Reply

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