446. Renew OCU Visa after age 50 Clarification - This may not be necessary
Questions: I am an US citizen and an OCI living in the United States. I am writing to you because I did not get proper answer to my question from the local mission.I am 68 years old. I got my OCI registration card and U-visa in 2010. I was already over 50 years of age at the time of first issue of OCI. I recently renewed my USA passport. Can I travel to India with my new passport, old passport which contains U-visa and the OCI book that was issued in May 2010? Or, do I need to renew my OCI before I can travel to India? Travisa Outsourcing says I need to renew my OCI one more time. If I have to renew it, please let me know why this is required, since the visa is life long and I was already over 50 years of age when it was first issued.Thanks for your help and with regards,Himansu Pal Answer: In your email you have written, If I have to renew it, please let me know why this is requiredand I would like to clarify for all our readers that this website is not affiliated in any way to the Indian government. Hence I cannot speak for them on any issue other than simply offer a personal comment. To ascertain why you must renew, you would have to contact the Indian Consulate applicable to your area of residence. In my opinion, Travisa outsourcing representative has given you the wrong information. This may be because the person you dealt with was unable to either understand the question being asked or perhaps was unable to understand the rules when reading the guidelines provided by the government. On the issue of whether OCI documents have to be re-issued each time a new passport is taken, the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs, on their website clearly state:OCI registration certificate and visa have got to be re-issued each time a new passport is issued up to the completion of 20 years of age and once after completion of 50 years of age.Re-issuance of OCI registration certificate and visa is not mandatory, each time a new passport is issued between 21-50 years of age. However, if the applicant wishes to obtain new set of OCI documents, he/she can apply for the same.(http://mha.nic.in/pdfs/FAQs-200709.pdf)•Hence, those who get OCI at an early age, must renew their OCI visa every time they get a new passport until they reach 20 years of age. •Once they have renewed their OCI at age 20, there is no compulsion to renew again until they reach the age of 50. When they reach the age of 50, they must renew one more time.For a person who gets their first OCI after age fifty, the question of renewal arises only if they wish to renew, as their OCI has indeed been issuedafter age 50. They have the option to either get the OCI visa transfered to their new passport or if they prefer they can simply carry their old passport that has the original OCI visa along with their new passport when traveling to India.Incidentally, I got my OCI after age 50 and have traveled to India with a new passport and my old passport that has the OCI U Visa stamp on it, without any problems. The immigration staff are well aware of the rules, on arrival at the airport when I presented my new passport that did not have the OCI visa stamped on it, I was politely asked for the passport that had the OCI visa, I showed the immigration officer my old passport with the OCI U Visa stamp and did not encounter any problems.Note: Both new passport and expired passport with OCI Visa stamp must be taken while traveling to India. Do not confuse OCI visa with the OCI booklet. If you simply take the booklet and not your previous passport that has the OCI Visa Stamped on it, you will face problems.
Changing Citizenship after acquiring OCI
In case someone who already has OCI changes their citizenship, they would be well advised to get their OCI records corrected and get a fresh OCI visa stamp on the passport of the country of which the acquired citizenship of. Example: Suppose you acquire OCI while you are a US citizen and the OCI visa is stamped on your US passport. Then you also acquire Canadian citizenship and travel to India on the basis of your valid Canadian passport and take along your expired US passport that has the OCI visa stamp! This may cause problems. The expired passport that has the OCI visa stamp and the new valid passport being used for travel, must be of the same country.