OCI Card Eligibility

Any foreign national who satisfies any of the following eligibility criteria:

  1. a citizen of India at the time, or at any time after, the commencement of the Constitution (January 26, 1950)

  2. eligible to become a citizen of India at the time of the commencement of the Constitution (January 26, 1950)

  3. belonged to any of the following territories that became part of India after August 15, 1947

    1. Sikkim from April 26, 1975

    2. Pondicherry from August 16, 1962

    3. Dadra & Nagar Haveli from August 11, 1961

    4. Goa, Daman, and Diu from December 20, 1961

  4. a child or grandchild or great-grandchild of a person that meets the criteria 1 through 3 above

  5. a minor child of a person mentioned in the criteria 1 through 4 above

  6. a minor child, both of whose parents are citizens of India

  7. a minor child whose one of the parents is a citizen of India
    For example, both parents are on an H1/H4 visa or on a Green card in the U.S., but the minor child is a U.S. citizen because he/she was born in the USA. In such a scenario, the child is eligible to apply for OCI, which was earlier not allowed when the PIO card scheme existed.

  8. spouse of foreign origin of a citizen of India and who has been married for at least two years immediately before applying

  9. spouse of foreign origin of an OCI cardholder registered under section 7A and who has been married for at least two years immediately before applying
    Note: Such a spouse shall be subjected to prior security clearance from a competent authority in India.

For spouse based OCI, if the marriage is dissolved or spouse passes away, they must notify and return the OCI card to the Indian Embassy/Consulate.


OCI card can not be granted to any of the following categories:

  1. A person who is/was and/or if their parents, grandparents or great grandparents are/were citizens of Pakistan or Bangladesh. Please note that this list may change from time to time.

  2. Foreign military personnel either in service or retired

  3. Civil government servant working in the Ministry of Defense as IT engineers / civil contractors.

  4. Minor foreigners who are born out of a live-in relationship and their parents subsequently either got married or continued with the live-in relationship

  5. Surrogate baby

  6. Child of single parents who other parent’s personal particulars about nationality are unavailable

  7. Foreign-born children whose one parent is Indian, one is foreign and the Indian parent has deceased, or the parents are divorced

  8. Foreign origin spouse when naturalized Indian origin spouse is not an OCI holder or Indian spouse does not hold an Indian passport

  9. Non-US passport holders temporarily on a B1/B2 visa in the US

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