PIO Card scheme – External Affairs Minister has announced that the conversion of PIO cards into OCI cards will be done free-of-charge (gratis) for applications submitted until December 31, 2016
The PIO Card scheme has been withdrawn vide Gazette Notification No.25024/9/2014F.I dated 09.01.2015. Henceforth, applicants may apply for OCI card ONLY, as PIO card scheme is no longer in existence.
The last date for submission of applications for registration as OCI cardholder in lieu of the PIO card online has been extended till 31st December, 2016. This cut-off date will be only for submission of the applications online by the applicants. A separate online application form for submission of application for registration as OCI cardholder in lieu of PIO card is available in the website http://passport.gov.in/oci/capchaActionPIO.
All the existing PIO card holders are urged to apply urgently for conversion of PIO to OCI.
Surrender of Indian citizenship
People are being requested to surrender their Indian citizenship after acquiring citizenship of New Zealand. The High Commission has noticed many cases where the applicants have not surrendered their Indian passports within three years of New Zealand citizenship. Some even have used the Indian passports for travel after acquiring foreign nationality.
All the PIOs in New Zealand, Samoa and Niue, who violate the Indian Passport Act are liable to Government of India prescribed penalty and the High Commission has no authority or discretion to waive off such penalty. Hence all those who are in violation of the Indian Passport act are advised to surrender their passports without further delay and deposit the due penalty to escape any further penalty. Defaulters may contact the High Commission to know their exact due penalty.
Visa application for minor/dependent children
Parents of minor children of Indian origin are, henceforth required to submit a copy of their previously held/cancelled Indian passport with the visa application of the minor children as a proof of compliance of Indian Passport Act to enable processing of the visa application.
All PIOs can also apply for OCI card, which, among many other benefits, facilitates easy and visa-free travel to India for life. This also takes care of your emergency travel needs to India and last minute difficulties in making travel related arrangements, besides ensuring economy of expenditure in the long term. It is important to note that all PIO card holders need to get their documents converted to OCI card latest by December 31 this year and this service is available free of cost till then.
Change of e-mail addresses of High Commission
Some of the email addresses of Indian High Commission have been changed and the new addresses are already operative. The old emails on the hicomind.org.nz web server are no longer working. The new emails are as follows:
1.All visa related matters: firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Issuance of new passport, passport renewal, lost/damaged passport, change of appearance, emergency travel document: email@example.com
3. Marriage registration, birth registration, death registration, any other legal/consular issue: firstname.lastname@example.org
3. OCI / PIO inquiries life certificate: email@example.com
4. PCC, attestation and miscellaneous services: firstname.lastname@example.org
5. Commerce and trade inquiries: email@example.com