As Centre plans to cancel OCI cards: here's what is Overseas Citizenship of India? Know its eligibility, benefits here | Mint – Mint

Amid the ongoing India-Canada row, India is in the process of cancelling the registration of more than a dozen Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) card holders for carrying out pro-Khalistan activities and anti-India propaganda, two people aware of the development told Mint. This move comes in the backdrop of India suspending visa services in its Canadian missions and also directing to cut its diplomatic staff in India.
According to information available on the ministry of external affairs website, a total of 4.06 million OCI registration cards were issued till 31 January, 2022.
It further states that, the central government can cancel the OCI registration if “the overseas citizen of India has shown disaffection towards the Constitution of India as by law established,” and if “it is necessary so to do in the interest of the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of India, friendly relations of India with any foreign country, or in the interests of the general public.”

Also Read: India-Canada news: Cancellation of OCI registration to suspension of visa. 10 updates

What is Overseas Citizenship of India?

The Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) is given to overseas Indians. It provides long term visa free travel and stay in India and gives the cardholders a host of privileges normally not given to a foreign national.

Also Read: India-Canada news LIVE updates

Who is eligible for OCI card?

-As per the ministry’s statement, a foreign national, – (i) who was a citizen of India at the time of, or at any time after 26th January, 1950; or (ii) who was eligible to become a citizen of India on 26th January, 1950; or (iii) who belonged to a territory that became part of India after 15th August, 1947; or (iv) who is a child or a grandchild or a great grandchild of such a citizen; or (v) who is a minor child of such persons mentioned above; or (vi) who is a minor child and whose both parents are citizens of India or one of the parents is a citizen of India – is eligible for registration as OCI cardholder.

Also Read: India-Canada diplomatic strain raises visa worries

-Moreover, spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India or spouse of foreign origin of an Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder and whose marriage has been registered and subsisted for a continuous period of not less than two years immediately preceding the presentation of the application is also eligible for registration as OCI cardholders.
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Who are not eligible for OCI cards?

Government’s official website of OCI services states, Person, who or either of whose parents or grandparents or great grandparents is or had been a citizen of Pakistan, Bangladesh or such other country are not eligible for registration as an Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder.

Benefits for OCI cardholders

-An OCI card holder enjoys multiple entry, multi-purpose life long visa to visit India;
-Other benefits include exemption from reporting to police authorities for any length of stay in India; and also parity with NRIs in financial, economic and educational fields except in the acquisition of agricultural or plantation properties.

Where to apply for OCI registration?

The application for OCI registration can be done online from the official website i.e.
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