Getting OCI from India

Hello… Tired after searching extensively for the right way to apply for OCI from India? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. I had to apply for OCI for my daughter Dhanya (US Citizen) in June 2018. Initially, we thought of applying for OCI from the US itself, but since we had to travel to India soon, we went with a 1-year multiple entry visa. The turn around time for the visa was only a week, as opposed to OCI from the US which was taking 2-3 months approximately then. On reaching India, since my daughter had to stay for more than 6 months, we decided to apply for OCI from India itself. I could not find enough resources online to get clarity on the steps. After posting on multiple forums and making ‘n’ number of calls to the FRRO office in Chennai, I successfully submitted and received OCI for my daughter in 45 days. 

Note: Please note that the applicant’s Indian visa should be valid for at least 90 days at the time of applying for OCI.

The eligibility criteria for OCI are multiple and can be found here. In our case, my husband and I are Indian citizens and thus we applied OCI for our daughter on those grounds. So this blog would be most useful if you have the same background. If not, there would be certain changes to the list of documents. Firstly, to apply for OCI in India, you need to approach the FRRO office. You may check here if your city or any closest city has an FRRO office. I live in Coimbatore and hence the closest was the FRRO office in Chennai.

To start with, download the application form from the Online OCI services website.

Documents to be uploaded:

  • Applicant’s photo as per specifications- We used the picture that we took for her visa (edited the white background to blue). She was 2 months then. We bought a white foam board from Staples and laid her on it. Then burst multiple shots and finally chose a good one. Please do not use white cloth for background, as creases would be visible. If not taking at home, you may take one at Costco/any drug store that has a photo center.
  • Applicant’s signature (thumb impression in case of infants)- Honestly, it was easier to take her thumb impression for the visa when she was 2 months. By OCI time, she was 5 months and knew more 😉 So my mom dipped her finger on the stamp ink pad, then smeared some on Dhanya’s thumb and took the impression on a paper. Luckily, we only need the image so you can place the thumb randomly anywhere on the A4 sheet, unlike a specific box as in the case of visa. For a male child, it would be left thumb and for a female child, it would be right. 
  • Passport copy
  • Visa page with the date of arrival
  • Birth certificate
  • Parents’ Indian passport copy 1st & last page
  • Parents’ marriage certificate copy

Let us take a look at the documents that have to be carried to the FRRO office:

  • Application form (2 sets)
  • Photo as per the specifications- Carry 2-3
  • Applicant Passport- original+copy
  • Indian Visa page with the date of arrival stamp
  • Birth certificate copy
  • Parents’ Indian passport copy
  • Parents’ marriage certificate copy
  • DD original + copy-  Drawn in favor of ‘Pay & accounts officer (Secretariat) MHA payable at New Delhi.’ {Please do double check once}
  • Address proof (for Indian address)– In my case, the address on my Indian IDs (DL/Voter ID/Passport) were all in my old address. My parents had shifted from Chennai to Coimbatore after I left for the US, so I did not have any address proof for the current residential address. I called the FRRO office to check on this and they asked at whose place I was staying. Since it was my father’s, they asked for his ID proof and a consent letter from his end for my daughter’s stay. I have given the format for the consent letter at the end of the blog. Do check it out if you are in the same situation.

06-Jun-2018: We reached the FRRO office in Chennai at 10:00 a.m. Since the office had opened just then, we were the second applicants over there. By 10:30 a.m. the officer checked all the documents I was carrying with me. She confirmed that I was carrying all the necessary documents with me and then asked another officer to check the status of my online application and the documents uploaded. It was around 11:30 a.m. and that is when the issue started. They could not locate the scanned copy of Indian visa page although I had uploaded it. After trying to delete and re-upload multiple times, it wasn’t showing up in their system. Then, someone else had a similar problem too and asked us to go and scan the document again in a nearby shop as they know the specs right. Then we scanned it accordingly and uploaded it. After that, it was available in the FRRO’s system as well. The reason I am sharing this experience here is, please ensure all the documents that you upload are within the file size limits specified. Also, be prepared for any surprises like these at the FRRO office 😉 So finally, around 1 p.m. we finished the entire process. They gave us an acknowledgment letter which should be carried while collecting the OCI and asked us to track online after 45 days. It is better to reach early in the morning so that even if you have any issues, you may sort it out and finish your work before they break for lunch. This is all the more important if your FRRO office is in another city.

20-Jul-18: Received the letter from FRRO that my daughter’s OCI was ready and that it has to be collected within 3 months of receipt of that letter. In the OCI acknowledgment letter which they had given when we applied, they had already mentioned the documents that have to be carried while collecting the OCI. The list is as below:

  • Valid passport
  • Passport which has the last arrival stamp
  • Residential permit/stay visa if any issued by FRRO
  • OCI acknowledgment letter.

19-Sep-18: We could collect the OCI only in September 2018 as we had to travel to Chennai to collect it. My father-in-law collected it on our behalf after showing all the necessary documents. We had sent our duly signed consent letter (format at the end of the blog) as well along with him, just in case. Also, he was carrying his Aadhar card for identity purpose. Please do call the FRRO office once and notify them that someone else would be collecting on your behalf.

So….that’s it. Though the documentation was a little tedious, overall the process was quite smooth. Please ensure to call your FRRO office and double check if you are carrying all the documents. Sometimes the rules do change. For e.g., previously we had to get our daughter’s birth certificate apostilled, but just a week before submission they relaxed that rule if parents are Indian citizens. So it is always better to call them once to check.

Best of luck with your OCI process 🙂

Below are the formats for the consent letters that I used:

  1. Consent letter by my father to stay at his place

From:
PALANISWAMY K.,
INDIA ADDRESS
To:
FRRO CHENNAI,
SHASTRI BHAWAN ANNEXE BUILDING,
26 HADDOWS ROAD,
NUNGAMBAKKAM, CHENNAI 600006
Dear Sir,

Subject: Consent for residing – regarding

I am PALANISWAMY K (AADHAAR NO. XXXXXXX), residing at No. YYYYYYYYYYYYYY, maternal grandfather of baby DHANYA BALASUBRAMANIAM (USA PASSPORT #: XXXX).
I hereby grant my consent to baby DHANYA BALASUBRAMANIAM to reside with me, during her stay in INDIA.
Attached is the self-attested copy of my AADHAAR NO. XXXXXXXXX.

Thanks and Regards
Sincerely
PALANISWAMY K.
(AADHAAR NO. XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX)

2. Consent letter from my end for my father-in-law to collect OCI

From:

Ms. DHARINI PALANISWAMY

US Address (I was in the US then)

To:

OFFICE OF THE FRRO

BUREAU OF IMMIGRATION,

SHASTRI BHAWAN ANNEXE,

26 HADDOWS ROAD,

NUNGAMBAKKAM, CHENNAI 600006

Dear Sir/Mam,

Subject: AUTHORIZATION TO COLLECT OCI – regarding.

Reference: FRRO CHENNAI REFERENCE NO. XXXXX – DHANYA BALASUBRAMANIAM

As I am not in a position to come in person to collect the OCI of my daughter, baby DHANYA BALASUBRAMANIAM (USA PASSPORT #: XXXXX), I hereby authorize my father-in-law Mr. YYYYY (AADHAAR NO. XXXXXXX), to collect the same.

He brings with him the following:

  1. His ADHAAR NO. XXXXXXXXX-  original and self-attested copy
  2. Original USA PASSPORT #: XXXXXXXX of baby DHANYA BALASUBRAMANIAM.
  3. OCI Acknowledgement letter
  4. FRRO letter intimating to collect OCI from FRRO office at Chennai

Request your kind selves to handover the OCI document to him.

Thanks and Regards

 

Sincerely

DHARINI PALANISWAMY

(PASSPORT NO. XXXXXX)

17-September-2018

5 thoughts on “Getting OCI from India

  1. Khushboo Thakur says:

    Hi , I am applying for my 3 year old daughter from Hyderabad. My daughter is staying with her grandparents in Nagpur , Maharashtra. Please let me know can I apply from Hyderabad also do I need to take my daughter with me to FRRO offic for the process

    • Dharinipal says:

      Hi Khushboo. There is no need to take your daughter to the FRRO office as per my experience. Confirm it when you speak to them. May I know why you want to apply from Hyderabad and not Maharashtra?

      • Khushboo says:

        I am working in Hyderabad, so it’s convenient for me todo it from here , we don’t FRRO offic bear my hometown.

  2. Khushboo Thakur says:

    Hi , Do we need to get the demand draft before filling online application ? . Please respond urgently.

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