The Indian government has restored all currently valid five-year e-tourist visas, handed out to citizens of 156 countries, and regular paper visas to nationals of all countries, with immediate effect, two years after their suspension following the COVID-19 outbreak.
Nationals of these 156 countries will also be eligible for issuance of fresh e-tourist visas as per the Visa Manual, 2019.
Currently valid regular (paper) tourist visa with validity of 5 years, issued to foreign nationals of all countries, which remained suspended since March 2020, shall stand restored.
Visa officials also said all currently valid old long-duration (10 years) regular tourist visas given to US and Japanese nationals have been restored. Fresh paper tourist visas up to five years validity will also be issued to the nationals of the eligible countries subject to the restrictions imposed from time to time, officials said.
Foreign nationals on tourist and e-tourist visas will be able to enter into India only through designated Sea Immigration Check Posts (IPs) or Airport ICPs by flights, including those under the ‘Vande Bharat Mission or ‘air bubble’ scheme or by any flights as allowed by the DGCA or Ministry of Civil Aviation. However, foreign nationals will not be allowed to enter through land border or riverine routes on a tourist visa or e-tourist visas.
The government instructions will not be applicable to Afghanistan nationals, who will continue to be governed by separate instructions issued by the union Home Ministry, regarding grant of e-Emergency X-Misc visa, officials said.