India partially restores tourist visas for foreigners
India will partially restore tourist visa facilities from October 15 for foreigners who want to come here in chartered flights, the Home Ministry said on Thursday. Also, foreign tourists on air bubble flights will be allowed from November 15, an official said.
India suspended all types of visas including tourist visas in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. Scheduled commercial flights are yet to resume.
Under the air bubble scheme, commercial airlines from specific countries are allowed to travel to and from India on a limited basis.
The Ministry said that it received representations from several State Governments as well as stakeholders in the tourism sector to restart tourist visas too.
“After considering various inputs, the MHA (Ministry of Home Affairs) has decided to begin granting of fresh tourist visas for foreigners coming to India through chartered flights with effect from October 15, 2021. Foreign tourists entering into India by flights other than chartered aircraft would be able to do so only with effect from November 15, 2021 on fresh tourist visas. All due protocols and norms relating to COVID-19 as notified by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare from time to time, shall be adhered to by the foreign tourists, carriers bringing them into India and all other stakeholders at landing stations,” the Ministry said.