Guidelines for Specific Visa Categories Consular Services

Guidelines for Specific Visa Categories

Tourist Visa

Tourist visa is issued to foreigners who do not have a residence or occupation in India and whose sole objective of visiting India is recreation, sightseeing, casual visit to meet friends and relatives, attending a short term yoga programme, and short duration medical treatment including treatment under Indian system of Medicine. No other activity is permissible on a Tourist visa. The Tourist visa is non-extendable and non-convertible.

There should be a gap of at least two months between two visits to India on a Tourist Visa on re-entry of nationals of Afghanistan, China, Iran, Pakistan, foreigners of Pakistan origin and Stateless persons. The two months gap is applicable only to Tourist Visa holders.

Anyone desiring to visit restricted areas requires permission for the same in advance.

Tourist Visa is for tourism purposes only and it should not be combined with Business, Studies, Medical Treatment, Conference, Employment, Journalism, etc. for which separate category of visa is available.

Business Visa

Business visa is available to foreign nationals for the following purposes:

To establish an industrial / business venture or to explore possibilities to set up an industrial/business venture, other than Proprietorship Firms and Partnership Firms, in India

Those visiting to purchase/sell industrial products or commercial products or consumer durables

Those visiting for technical meetings / discussions, attending Board meetings or general meetings for providing business services support

Those visiting for recruitment of manpower

Foreign nationals who are partners in the business and/or functioning as Directors of the company.

Foreign nationals coming to India for consultations regarding exhibitions or for participation in exhibitions, trade fairs, business fairs etc.

Crew members of scheduled/ non-scheduled flights operated by scheduled airlines, non-scheduled and chartered flights operated by non-scheduled airlines and special flights.

To participate in cultural events/ activities with remuneration.

Applicants going for employment in projects/contracts in India should apply for an Employment visa and not a Business visa.

Student Visa

Student visa is available to those whose sole objective is to pursue on-campus, full time (structured)
courses (including English and other language courses and vocational education) at educationali nstitutions (Central/ State Government Educational Institutions & Private Educational Institutions) duly recognized by statutory regulatory body and have acquired statutory authorization to conduct the course(s) complying with GST regulations.

Student visa valid up to five years or the duration of course (whichever is less).

The applicant should furnish proof of admission in a recognized/reputed educational institution and evidence of financial support. Applicants are advised to ascertain that the institutions they intend to enrol are recognised. The University Grants Commission (UGC) maintains a list of all Central Universities, State Universities, Private Universities and Deemed Universities on its website ( and is available at following link It also maintains a list of colleges which are included under Section 2(f) and Section 12(B) of the UGC Act, 1956 and autonomous colleges and this list is available at Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) website ( also contains list of MHRD funded technical institutions such as IITs, NITs, IIMs, IISc, IISERs, IIITs, NITTTRs etc. and also the list of Institutions of National Importance (INIs). This list is available at Further, list of institutes approved by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) is available on their website Further, the UGC website also contains a list of fake universities.

Student Visa is not issued for pursuing ‘Short Term Courses’ in India which are not recognized. List of recognized courses under vocational education is available in the website of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE)

In case of admission to a medical or para-medical course, a no objection certificate from the Ministry of Health, Government of India, must be furnished.

Student visas can also be availed for study of Yoga, Vedic Culture, Indian System of Music/Dance, etc., in recognized institutions.

A Provisional Student Visa will be issued in cases where the applicant does not have a firm letter of admission from the university, recognized college or educational institution. The reason for not having a firm letter can include pending admission tests or other requirements. In such cases, the provisional student visa may be issued on the basis of the provisional admission certificate / letter of offer issued by the institution in India. A provisional visa is valid for six months. If admission is not given or confirmed within the stipulated period, the student will have to leave India. No extension of a provisional student visa is allowed.

 Visa for pursuing Internships (covered under Student Visa)

Applicants intending to pursue Internship under AIESEC programme or independently through private organizations may apply also apply for Student Visa. 

Visa for Internship is granted to pursue internship –

at any time during the course of study; or immediately after completion of the course of study but the gap between the completion of course of study and the commencement of the internship should not be more than two years.

A letter from the Indian company/ educational institution/ NGO/ foreign Missions or Posts in India/ foreign government organizations concerned sponsoring the foreign national for the internship programme and clearly indicating the period of internship, should be submitted.

In case the internship is in a Company, the intern should draw a minimum remuneration of Rs. 3.60 lakhs per annum. There will, however, be no minimum salary limit in the case of internship in Educational institutions, NGOs, foreign Missions or Posts in India and foreign government organizations. 

Visa for Research in India (covered under Student Visa)

The foreigner who desires to undertake research in India should apply to this Embassy giving the subject of the research project, details of places to be visited, previous visits, whether the scholar has secured admission to a recognized or reputed institution and evidence of financial resources. 

The University Grants Commission (UGC) maintains a list of all Central Universities, State Universities, Private Universities and Deemed Universities on its website ( and is available at following link It also maintains a list of colleges which are included under Section 2(f) and Section 12(B) of the UGC Act, 1956, and autonomous colleges, this list is available at Apart from this, MHRD website ( also contains list of MHRD funded technical institutions such as IITs, NITs, IIMs, IISc, IISERs, IIITs, NITTTRs etc. and also the list of Institutions of National Importance (INIs). This list is available at institutions.


Further, list of institutes approved by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) is available on their website Further, the UGC website also contains a list of fake universities.

The following additional information/documents are required to be furnished along with the prescribed application form for Research Visa:

Subject/topic of the Research project

Details of places to be visited in India during the project period Details of previous visits to India, Letter of admission and Certificate of Affiliation in original, from the recognized Indian University/Institution in token of having secured admission for the research purpose. (emails or photocopies of admission letters will not be accepted).

Evident of financial resources to meet the expenses during the stay in India

In case the research proposal relates to the applicant's own country a brief synopsis (150 words) and justification for doing research in India should also be submitted along with the application.

OCI cardholders would require special permission to undertake research work in India.

Medical Visa

A Medical Visa is given to those foreign nationals whose sole purpose is to seek medical treatment in established / recognised / specialised hospitals / treatment centres in India.

Medical Visa is permissible for treatment under Indian system of Medicine also. The initial duration of the visa is up to six months or the period of the treatment, whichever is less.

The following are the additional documents to be submitted for obtaining Medical Visa:

The applicant should submit the Doctor's recommendation and a copy of the letter from the hospital in India accepting the patient for treatment and stating estimated expenditure on treatment. Hospital Authorities must share the documents issued by them recommending therein the issuance of a medical visa to the foreigner e.g. medical invitation letter, appointment letter etc. on the official email ID of this Embassy processing of Medical Visa cases.

A maximum of two Attendants/ family members of the patient coming to India for
medical treatment may apply for Medical Attendant visa. The duration of the visa will be co-terminus with that of the patient.

Conference Visa

Conference visa is available to foreigners who wish to visit India to attend a conference / seminar or workshop. The applicant requires to submit an invitation letter to a conference/seminar/workshop being organized in India by a Ministry or Department of the Government of India, State Governments or UT Administrations, Public Sector Undertakings, Central Educational Institutions, Public Funded Universities [list of such institutions is available on the website and the website of the University Grants Commission (], or an organization owned and controlled by the Government of India or any State Government / UT, United Nations or its Specialized Agencies.

Prior clearance of Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Home Affairs, New Delhi, is required for issue of conference visas to foreigners participating in conferences/ seminars/ workshops etc. in India in the following cases:-

(a) Participants are from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Sudan, foreigners of Pakistani origin and Stateless persons; and

(b) Participants of conferences /seminars/workshops who are required to visit 'Restricted' or 'Protected' areas in India, or areas affected by terrorism, militancy and extremism etc. viz. Jammu & Kashmir and the North Eastern States (other than the States of Manipur, Mizoram and Nagaland).

Organisers of such conferences may also refer to link

Employment Visa

Employment visas are granted to applicant who is a skilled and qualified professional or a person who is being engaged by a company, organization, industry or undertaking in India on contract or employment basis at a senior level, skilled position such as technical expert, senior executive, or in a managerial position.

Proof of employment in the form of employment contract is necessary.

The foreign national must comply with all legal requirements like payment of tax liabilities etc.

The foreign national seeking employment visa in any sector should draw a minimum gross salary of Rs. 16.25 lakhs per annum - which is worked out taking into account the salary and all other allowances paid to the foreign national in cash and also perquisite like rent free accommodation etc., which are included in the salary for the purpose of calculating income tax. The company/ organization employing a foreign national should clearly indicate in the Employment contract, the salary and allowances being paid in cash and all other perquisites like rent free accommodation etc. which would be taken into account for the purpose of working out the income tax payable by the employee. Such perquisites must be quantified and indicated in the Employment contract.

However, this condition of annual floor limit on income will not apply to (i) Ethnic cooks employed by foreign Missions in India (this will not apply to ethnic cooks employed in commercial venture), (ii) Language teachers ( other than English language teachers) / translators (this will not include teachers employed to teach particular subjects in foreign language), (iii) Staff working for the concerned Embassy/ High Commission in India (iv) Foreigners, eligible for ‘E’ visa for honorary work with the NGOs registered in the country without salary etc, although they receive an honorarium up to a ceiling of Rs. 10,000 per month.

Film Visa

Film Visa is granted to such applicants who are coming to shoot a feature film/ reality TV & Web Shows/ Series, Commercial TV Serials/ Shows and Web Shows/ Series in India, with approval of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, subject to the following conditions:- 

Submitting to this Embassy, a letter of intent regarding the shooting of the film in India, mentioning the production schedule or the dates of shooting, particulars of the Producers and Production company, cast and crew coming to India for the purpose of the shoot/ production, chosen location, list of filming equipment (if any) that is being brought into the country and other relevant to help evaluate the merit of the case. Detailed synopsis / treatment of the theme is also required to be submitted/

The applicant must have the requisite permission to shoot the feature film/ reality TV & Web Shows/ Series, Commercial TV Serials/ Shows and Web Shows/ Series in India from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India.

The visa would be project specific i.e. the film, and the International Production Company.

The maximum duration of the Visa will be for one year with multiple entry facility.

Journalist Visa

A Journalist Visa is issued to a foreigner who is a professional journalist, photographer, documentary film producer or director (other than of commercial films), a representative of a radio and/or television organization, travel writer/ travel promotion photographer etc; who is of assured financial standing (the production of a return ticket and availability of a reasonable amount of money to spend during stay in India may be considered sufficient for this purpose); and who is a Journalist visiting India for any other purpose, such as attending a conference, tourism, meeting relatives etc.

Detailed reasons for visit to Indian may be submitted along with the visa application.

The applicant should submit proof of being a journalist/ Identity Card of the applicant registered as a journalist.

If you are intending to make a documentary in India, kindly contact the Press and Information wing of this Embassy.

Processing time for such visits would usually depend on the approval that may be required from concerned Ministries/Departments of Government of India and state government, as the case may be.

Transit Visa

A transit visa is granted for the sole purpose of enabling the holders to travel through India to reach their ultimate destination. Change of purpose is not allowed. The visa will ordinarily be valid for a single/double journey and for entry within 15 days of date of issue. The Transit visa is valid for direct transit only for a maximum period of 3 days. For a stay in India beyond 3 days, an appropriate visa should be obtained.

Entry Visa

Entry visa may be sought in cases where the purpose of the visit to India is not convered under any other category of the visas mentioned above.

Entry visa is also issued to a person of Indian Origin, foreign spouse or children of a person of Indian origin, foreign spouse of Indian national, or a child or grandchild of a person who has held Indian nationality.

In addition to the above, participants in International Sports events and the officials (including coach) of the Sports teams (other than those who are engaged in commercial sports events in India on contract), and those intending to join Auroville Foundation, Aurobindo Ashram, Missionaries of Charity, Buddhist monasteries, temples, or similar organisations may seek Entry visa.




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