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Advisory and MOH notification

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Consulate General of India Cape Town


Sub: Discontinuation of hand written travel document by the international Civil Aviation Organisation from October, 2018.

          The following is issued for clarification of hand written documents:

    i) As per the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA)  Notification No. 26011/01/2014-IC. I dated 9.01.2015( appended below)  all PIO cardholders with valid PIO cards as on 9.01.2015 are deemed to be OCI cardholders. Hence the PIO card, which is deemed OCI card continues to be legally valid as per law.
    ii) Machine-readable electronic travel document is mandated by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) guidelines. It is not a precondition prescribed by MHA/Bureau of lmmigration (BoI) for entry into India.
    iii) All PIO cardholders with valid PIO cards as on 9.01.2015 are advised to apply for conversion of the PIO card to OCI card. Detailed instructions conveying the procedure for processing of application for conversion of PIO card to OCI card can be accessed at https://passport.gov.in/oci.
    iv) As far as Bureau of Immigration (Bol) is concerned, it will accept PIO cards as valid document till March 31, 2019 along with valid foreign passport. If in the meantime, any deadline is notified by the ICAO, thereby making hand written PIO cards invalid, then PIO cardholders may have to obtain appropriate visa from our Missions, if they have not converted their PIO card to OCI card. However, the Indian immigration check posts will continue to consider all PIO cards valid to exit/entry into India till 31stMarch, 2019.