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Difference between OCI and PIO

Difference between OCI and PIO

In the past, people who were not citizens of India could only visit or work in India on a temporary basis. However, with the advent of the OCI and PIO schemes, this is no longer the case. This article will explore the differences between these two schemes.

What is OCI?

OCI is a visa that allows certain foreign nationals of Indian origin to live and work in India on a long-term basis. OCI status is granted to those who have been living in India for a certain period of time, as well as to those who have family members who are Indian citizens or OCI holders. OCI status allows holders to live and work in India without the need for a separate visa or work permit. However, OCI holders are not allowed to vote, run for office, or own agricultural land in India. OCI status can be revoked if the holder is found to be involved in activities that are prejudicial to the security of India. OCI status can also be passed on to future generations, provided that they meet the eligibility criteria.

What is PIO?

PIO Visa is a type of visa that is issued to foreign nationals who are PIO cardholders. PIO stands for Person of Indian Origin. PIO cardholders are entitled to certain benefits in India, such as multiple-entry visas and exemption from registration requirements. PIO Visa holders are also allowed to remain in India for up to 180 days at a time. PIO Visas are valid for 10 years, after which they must be renewed. PIO Visas can be obtained from Indian missions and consulates abroad. PIO Visa holders are advised to carry their PIO cards with them at all times while in India.

Difference between OCI and PIO

OCI and PIO are both types of visas that allow foreign nationals of Indian origin to travel to India. OCI is a multiple-entry visa that allows the holder to live and work in India indefinitely, while PIO is a single or multiple-entry visa that allows the holder to stay in India for up to three years at a time. PIO holders are also eligible for certain benefits, such as exemption from police registration and visa requirements for certain countries. OCI holders are not eligible for these benefits. Both OCI and PIO holders are required to obtain a valid passport and maintain their student status (if applicable) throughout their stay in India. OCI holders may also be required to renew their OCI card every five years, while PIO holders do not need to renew their visas.


If you are interested in obtaining an OCI visa, please contact our office for more information. Our team of professionals would be happy to assist you with the process and answer any questions you may have. Alternatively, if you are interested in a PIO visa, please visit the website of the Indian Consulate in your area for more information. We hope this article has been helpful in providing an overview of the two types of visas available to Indian citizens. Thank you for reading!

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