NEW DELHI: Just two days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement in front of a cheering crowd in Madison Square garden in New York, a gazette notification was issued fulfilling one of his promises - lifetime visa for Person of Indian Origin card holders.
“The gazette notification fulfils the announcement that all PIO cardholders will now enjoy a lifelong visa to India,” tweeted PM on Tuesday. The September 30 notification changes the validity of the PIO card from 15 years to the lifetime of the cardholder. The notification also added that PIO card holders would not have to report to the police anymore, even if their visit exceeds 180 days.
“Am very glad to share that GoI has moved swiftly on the announcements I had made on consular & visa issues during my USA visit,” he tweeted. On the other announcement of merging the PIO and Overseas citizens of India scheme, he said that the Ministry of Home Affairs was “working” on it.
Besides, the PM also added that Indian embassies and consulates have been issued instructions to give 10 years’ visas to US citizens “apart from special circumstances”. The PM had announced visa-on-arrival for US citizens at the same event. However, it is still not clear what the “special circumstances” are.