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The Government today has decided to make a graded relaxation in visa and travel restrictions for more categories of foreign nationals and Indian nationals who wish to enter or leave India almost eight months after their suspension following the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent imposition of a nationwide lockdown.

The Ministry of Home Affairs(MHA) has issued a statement in which it said that,"It has been decided to permit all OCI and PIO card holders and all other foreign nationals intending to visit India for any purpose, except on a tourist visa to enter by air or water routes through authorized airports and seaport immigration check posts."

This will also includes flights operated under Vande Bharat Mission, Air Transport Bubble arrangements or by any non scheduled commercial flights as allowed by the Ministry of Civil Aviation. All such travelers will, however have to strictly adhere to the guidelines of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare regarding quarantine and other health/COVID-19 matters.


Under this graded relaxation, Government of India has also decided to restore with immediate effect all existing visas (except electronic visa, Tourist Visa and Medical Visa), the statement said.

MHA has also said that if the validity of such visas has expired, fresh visas of appropriate categories can be obtained from Indian Mission/Posts concerned. Foreign nationals intending to visit India for medical treatment can apply for a Medical Visa including for their medical attendants.

The ministry said in a statement that in view of the situation arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic, the government had taken a series of steps to curtail the inward and outward movement of international passengers since February, 2020.

The government has now decided to make a graded relaxation in visa and travel restrictions for more categories of foreign nationals and Indian nationals who wish to enter or leave India.
Thusly, this choice will empower unfamiliar nationals to come to India for different purposes, for example, business, meetings, work, considers, research, clinical purposes and so on 

While the limitations on visas were forced after the episode of the Covid pandemic in February, business flight tasks were suspended when the cross country lockdown became effective on March 25.

However, the government has been allowing limited operations of Air India flights under the 'Vande Bharat' mission for certain categories OCI and PIO card holders and those Indians who were stuck due to COVID-19 outbreak since June.
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