An OCI card is a document that people who are of Indian origin can use if they are planning on travelling to India, but they are of foreign nationality. The OCI card works as an alternative to a visa, which only lasts for a short tenure.
A few of the instances where this could be applicable are if an individual was working abroad for a large part of their lifetime, but their family is back in India, and they have to travel often. Other instances are that they are running businesses in India and another country, but since India does not allow the people to hold dual citizenship, it only makes sense that they have to give up on one if they want the other and then get an OCI card.
There is a rule allowing people to apply for their Indian nationality again if they had an OCI card for more than 5 years and were in the country for most of that time. However, one of the rules of holding an OCI card is they need a foreign passport, which they would now have to surrender, along with the OCI card for their Indian passport.
While there are a lot of advantages that people receive when they apply for and receive their OCI card, there are a few things that they would miss out on, if they are not Indian nationals.
Some of the benefits that people with OCI cards cannot avail of are:
● Not entitled to vote
● Cannot be a member of Legislative Assembly, Legislative Council or Parliament
● Cannot hold constitutional posts such as President, Vice President, Judge of Supreme Court or High Court etc.
● Cannot be employed within the Government.
● Cannot own agricultural land within the country
Other than these, they can work through most of the rules put out and in their favour.
The procees cycle of applying for an OCI card is changing, and it is now a lot easier than it ever was. While people were physically coordinating with offices and the Indian missions in the past, they can coordinate the entire process online, which is easy and convenient.
To make the process easier, all applicants had to get through the website if they wanted the OCI application forms. While some prefer coordinating through the website from beginning to end, others prefer downloading the application forms and coordinating with the Indian missions depending on where they are living.
All the information about the process was available online. Some of the best rules about the process were that it allows people to get all the information they needed.
They could download the list of supporting documents and then gather them at their convenience before getting through the process. Additionally, they could get information about the nearest centres, the paperwork needed, the duration that it would take and everything else about the process.