OutBound MICE

India Launches Online System to Issue Conference Visa to Foreigners

Event Clearance System will enable the Indian missions abroad to issue Conference Visa to foreign nationals or delegates.

The Indian Ministry of Home Affairs has launched an online Event Clearance System for granting security clearance to foreigners who want to attend conferences, seminars or workshops organized in the countr.

This system will enable the Indian missions abroad to issue Conference Visa to foreign nationals or delegates intending to attend such events organized by a ministry or department of the Government of India, state governments or union territory administrations, public sector undertakings, central educational institutions, public funded universities or private institutions or NGOs, the ministry said in a statement in New Delhi on May 2.

The whole process has become paperless and standardized, Indian Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba, who launched the online module, said. This will result in effective monitoring and timely disposal of applications. Various officials involved in the process can access the online application and documents, and take a proper decision to extend support to the organizers and participants of such conferences, the statement added.

Prior to the introduction of online module, obtaining clearances for organizing a conference, seminar or workshop for issue of conference visa to foreign delegates was an offline procedure. The organizers were required to apply for the clearances on a physical form along with documents. The processing of event clearance was also an offline procedure and the clearances were being issued by the ministry on a physical format.

If a conference visa is approved, a three-month single-entry business visa is granted to the foreign national. The validity of a conference visa is for a period of six months with single entry permission.

Indian missions are authorized to issue conference visas to delegates on production of an invitation to these conferences, seminars or workshops being organized in India. However, in some cases, prior reference is required to be made to the home ministry before conference visas is granted to foreigners participating in such events in India. These cases include participants who are nationals of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq and Sudan, or foreigners of Pakistani origin or stateless persons. Also, if the participants are required to visit “restricted” or “Protected” areas in India, or areas affected by terrorism, militancy and extremism, such as Jammu and Kashmir and the North-eastern states (other than Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland).

The officials of the Foreigners Division have recently brought out several successful initiatives relating to Overseas Citizenship of India, and foreigners’ registration, Gauba said, adding that these initiatives have made the processes faster, transparent and paperless.

Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh launched the e-FRRO scheme on April 13, according to which foreigners visiting India will no longer be required to visit the Foreigners Registration Office (FRO) for services associated with visa. These services will now be offered to them online via the web-based application e-FRRO (e-Foreigners Regional Registration Office) platform.

Source : https://littleindia.com

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