The launch of the PIO (Persons of Indian Origin) card was done on the September of 2002 by the government of India. This card allows any person of Indian origin living outside India a visa free entry. Not only they can enter visa free but they will have all the right which are enjoyed till then only by the NRIs (Non-Resident Indians) which includes the buying of non-agricultural land. More than 15 million people of the Indian origin living outside India will get the benefit of the card. If you heard about the card and do not know the applying process, here we will describe the full process of applying for the card along with its full benefits.
Application Process for PIO Card:
- You can download the application form for the PIO card from the website mha.nic.in or you can just click on the link to download it http://mha1.nic.in/pdfs/pioform.pdf. The form is available at the FRRO office too.
- The application should be made to the Indian post or mission where the applicant is residing.
- If the applicant is already in India on a long term visa and is staying in the cities like Kolkata, Delhi, Hyderabad, or Amritsar, he can submit the filled in application form by visiting the Foreigners Regional Registration Officer of the state he is residing.
- The persons who are staying on other cities can submit their filled in application form at Joint Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Foreigners Division.
- The documents you need to attach with the application form are Indian Passport, school leaving certificate, passport size photograph, foreign passport Xerox copy, Xerox copy of visa, Fee in form of demand draft and two Xerox copies of it.
- The fee for a PIO card is $155 for the kids below the age of 18 and $310 for the adults.
- The validity of the card is 15 years.
Holder Benefits of the PIO Card:
- For the person of Indian origin living outside India, this is a multi entry visa as the card is considered as visa.
- If you have the PIO card, you don’t need a employment visa or a student visa.
- If a person visiting India on a PIO card stays below 180 days, he does not needs to register but over 180 days, registration is must.
- The PIO card holder will have all the rights of an NRI.
- The card can be used for applying for a driving license, PAN card or even open a bank account for the holder.