Tuesday, May 25, 2010


More often than not I am approached by Indian people residing abroad or people of Indian Origin (yes, they are different) in connection with their rights and privileges in India. On a different note, It's heartening to see that all these people have great love for this land. Indian people living abroad are divided, for reasons, in three categories viz. NRI, PIO and OCI of which the last two are more or less same.
The differences amongst these three are listed hereunder.

PIO Card Holder
Definition A citizen of India, holding an Indian passport, but residing abroad A foreign national who has Indian origins or Indian ancestors. A PIO holding a PIO Card, as per the Scheme of The Ministry of Home Affairs, 2002 Overseas Indians who migrated from India after 26th January, 1950, except those from Pakistan and Bangladesh
Apply to
1) Any Indian Mission abroad or,
2) Any of the Foreigners Regional Registration Offices in India or

3) The Joint Secretary (Foreigners), Ministry of Home Affairs
Rs.15,000 or equivalent for adults
Rs.7,500 for minors
USD 275 or equivalent in applicant’s local currency.
PIO card holders pay only USD 25 or equivalent
Privileges At par with resident Indians
a) No extra-ordinary benefits
b) Require visa for any trip to India
c) Required to register at local FRRO in India upon arrival
Exempt from
a)Visa to India for 15 years
b) Registration at FRRO if stay in India is within 180 days
c) If stay exceeds 180 days, registration at FRRO within 30 days
d) At par with NRIs in all spheres of activity except purchase of agricultural property
a) Lifelong multiple entry visa to India
b) No registration at FRRO for any length of stay
c) At par with NRIs in all spheres of activity, except purchase of agricultural property.

the above table is courtesy NRI Realty News.

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