New Delhi: As domestic flights gear up to resume services this Monday, the central government is now focusing on ways to reopen air services for Indians who want to travel to or from a foreign country. While international flights are still being contemplated, the Ministry of Home Affairs on Friday allowed travel for certain categories of Indians overseas. Also Read - Unlock 1: Social Distancing Not Maintained at Healthy Ministry Office Itself, Don't Use Lifts, Only Video Conference Allowed, Says New Guideline
Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) cardholders can now take a breath of relief as the Home Ministry relaxed the travel and visa restrictions for some of them “in response to COVID-19 Evaluation of Indian nationals stranded abroad”. The government has already been operating special Air India flights amid the pandemic and lockdown around the globe to rescue Indians stuck abroad. Also Read - Delhi News: Capital Registers Record Single-day Spike of 1,513 Cases, Total Tally Crosses 23,000-mark
As a result, the ministry has permitted OCI cardholders who fall under these categories: Also Read - Delhi Makes 7-Day Home Quarantine Must For All Passengers Coming to Capital By Flights, Trains, Buses
1. Minor children born to Indian nationals who are abroad with OCI cards.
2. OCI cardholders who wish to return to India on account of family emergencies.
3. Couples where one of the spouses is OCI cardholder, while the other a permanent resident of India.
4. University students, studying abroad with OCI card who wish to return to India.
Earlier this week, many Indian-Americans whose parents are OCI cardholders expressed their frustration over Washington’s decision to temporarily ban long-term visas that have caused them great difficulty in booking flight tickets on repatriation services.