Coronavirus update: India becomes first country to suspend visas of all foreign nationals

Visas of diplomats, officials, UN / International Organisations officials’ employment visas are exempted

By DTE Staff
Published: Thursday 12 March 2020

The Indian government has suspended visas for foreign nationals from all across the globe owing to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. The decision will come into effect from March 13, 2020.

India is the first among more than 120 countries affected by this outbreak to take such a drastic step. Earlier, India had suspended visas of travellers coming from COVID-19-affected countries but a late-night March 11 advisory notified a blanket ban.

The visa-free travel facility granted to Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) card holders has also been kept in abeyance till April 15, 2020.

“Any foreign national who intends to travel to India for a compelling reason may contact the nearest Indian Mission,” the advisory said, adding visas of diplomats, officials, UN / International Organisations officials’ employment visas were exempted. 

Not only this, all incoming Indian travellers arriving from China, Italy, Iran, South Korea, Spain, France, Germany shall be quarantined for 14 days after arrival.

Incoming travellers, including Indian nationals, are advised to avoid non-essential travel and are informed that they can be quarantined for a minimum of 14 days on their arrival in India.

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