Frequently Asked Questions - Visa
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Answers to frequently asked questions are given below. If they do not answer your queries, then kindly send your query by email at Those seeking status of their pending applications should do so only after the due date mentioned on the receipt. While doing so, the applicants should invariably mention such details as the receipt number, date, name and the service sought. Two clear working-days must be allowed for preparation and issue of the replies
Please note that the answers given below are general, there could be exceptions from case to case.

Visa - General

1. As the service requested by me takes too much time, can I have my passport back while the Embassy processes my application?
Ans : Yes, only in exceptional cases. Contact India Visa Application Centre (IVAC) with an application stating precise reason for seeking the passport back while your application is under process. You will need to furnish a copy of the relevant pages of your passport (including the pages where Japanese visa appears in case of non-Japanese passport holders). You would need to resubmit your passport to IVAC two days before pick up time.

2. Who has to register with FRO / FRRO (Foreigners Registration Office / Foreigners Regional Registration Office)?
Ans : Please see link

3. Can Japanese nationals apply for Indian visa only in Japan and not in other Indian Embassies/Consulate in other countries?
Ans :They can apply at any Indian Embassy or Consulate, though time required and fee charged would be higher.

4. Can I take my personal pet such as dog, cat and bird to India?
Ans : As per present policy on import of pets to India, Government of India has allowed import of two pet animals as baggage only to persons transferring their residence to India after two years of continuous stay abroad, subject to production of the required health certificate from the country of origin and examination of said pets by the concerned Quarantine Officer in India.  You may also check with the concerned airlines.

5. Do I have to carry health certificate certifying that I am free from AIDS, etc. when I go to India?
Ans : No.

6. What kind of currency should I carry when I go to India?
Ans : All hard currencies like US$, Pound Sterling, Euro, Japanese Yen, etc., are exchangeable in India.

7. Is urgent issue of visa possible?
Ans : Yes, but is decided based on the merits of the case.  An additional fee is chargeable.

Tourist Visa

8. I am an ordinary foreign citizen. Do I need a visa to go to India?
Ans : Yes. All foreign nationals barring those from Nepal, Bhutan and Maldives need visa to visit India.

9. What kind of visa do I need to go to India for sightseeing?
Ans : Tourist visa.

10. What are the requirements for applying for tourist visa?
Ans : Please refer to list Visa Services.

11. Can I extend tourist visa while staying in India?
Ans : No.

12. What will happen if I have to stay longer due to illness or some other unavoidable reason?
Ans : Please report your problem to the nearest Foreigners Registration Office. List of Foreigners Regional Registration Offices may be seen at addresses of FRROs.

Business Visa

24. What are the requirements for getting Indian business visa? 
Ans : Please refer to list at Visa Services.

25. What is the usual validity of Business visa one can get? 
Ans : The validity of Business visa is up to 5 years with multiple entries. 

26. Can I stay continuously for one year in India with 1 year Business visa? 
Ans : Yes, provided you register yourself with FRRO.

27. Can I work in India if I enter India with business visa? 
Ans : No.

28. Can I convert my Indian Business visa into Employment visa, Student visa or any other visa after entering India?

Ans : No.

29. Can I extend my Business visa if it expires while I am in India? 
Ans : Yes.  You need to approach the nearest FRRO/FRO.

Student / Research Visa

30. What are the requirements for getting Student or Research visa? 
Ans : Please refer to Visa Services.

31. Is there any difference between Student Visa and Research Visa? 
Ans : Yes. For Student visa, you may directly approach IVAC. For a Research Visa, you should first approach the Press, Information & Cultural (PIC) Wing of the Embassyand seek clearance from them (for further details,contact With the clearance from the PIC wing, you can approach IVAC for grant of appropriate visa.

32. Can I change my college, institution or university on my own after reaching India with Student visa or Research visa?
Ans : No.  In exceptional cases, it is done with the approval of Ministry of Home Affairs.

33. Can I extend my visa in India and join another course after completing the course for which I have initially obtained student/research visa? 
Ans : Yes, you may, provided the educational institution is recognized. Also please contact the nearest FRRO/FRO in India.

Restricted Area Permit / Protected Area Permit (RAP/PAP)

34. Can I go anywhere in India if I have a valid tourist visa? 
Ans : No. Even with a valid Indian visa, you will not be allowed to enter areas such as Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim (partly in Protected Area and partly in Restricted Area), parts of Himachal Pradesh, parts of Uttarakhand, parts of Jammu & Kashmir, parts of Rajasthan, and Andaman & Nicobar Islands.

35. What will I do to enter these areas?
Ans : In addition to the Indian visa, you need Restricted/Protected Area Permit (RAP/PAP) to enter these areas.

36. Can I enter all these areas with the RAP/PAP? 
Ans : With RAP/PAP, you can enter only some parts of Arunachal Pradesh, Andaman & Nicobar Islands,  and Sikkim.

37. What is the permissible period of stay in these areas where tourists are allowed to enter with Permit? 
Ans : Arunachal Pradesh - 30 days; Himachal Pradesh 30 days, J&K 7 days, Andaman & Nicobar Islands - 45 days; and Sikkim - 15 days. Please note: the period of stay is from date of entry to date of exit from the area.

38. Do I have to pay fee for special Permit? 
Ans : Yes, the fee for RAP is Yen 4,125 except for nationals of Afghanistan, Argentina, Bangladesh, North Korea, Jamaica, Maldives, Mauritius, Mongolia, South Africa, Uruguay, Nepal, Bhutan and Pakistan, who are exempt from this fee.

39. Do I need to fill any special form for RAP/PAP?
Ans : Yes. Form is available and can be download here PDF.

40. Can I take my professional model video camera/camera to India for my personal use? 
Ans : Yes. All professional equipment carried by passengers need to be declared at the Customs at port of entry.

41. Can I change my Tourist visa to Student visa, Business visa or any other visa after I reach India?
Ans : No.

42. What will be the validity of my tourist visa and how many entries can I make with my Indian tourist visa? 
Ans : Generally, a Tourist Visa is valid for six months with multiple entries. However, for certain nationalities the period and number of entries may differ.

43. Is the validity of the Indian visa starting from the date of issue or from the date of entry into India? 
Ans :Validity of the Indian visa starts from the date of issue.

44. Can I do some other thing such as joining Yoga classes, do petty business, attending short courses, etc. after entering India with Tourist visa? 
Ans : No. For such cases, apply for appropriate visa.

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