Indian Government places strict measures for Stranded NRIs in India to fly back

Indian home ministry has outlined strict protocols for the travelling of NRI’s who stranded in India to abroad. Government’s order in this regard has come after it allowed the NRi’s to return abroad. In the fresh order home ministry states “Such persons will apply to the ministry of civil aviation or to any agency designated by MoCA for this purpose along with necessary details, including places of departure and arrival as prescribed by MoCA.”

However, in order to bring the situation, in which deadly coronavirus has been dangerously spreading, under control the center government has fastened stringent conditions to the return of NRIs, abroad.

The ministry has indicated that only those who will be allowed to travel to their targeted countries if their visa for that country is valid for at least one year or the passenger is a green card or OCI (overseas citizen of India) card holder. However, the centre has made a concession for people who will be journeying for medical emergencies or a death of a family member and such passengers have been asked to carry a visa that is valid for six months.

While their travel from India will be on “non-scheduled commercial flights that are allowed by the MoCA for bringing back stranded Indians,” on the basis of confirmed tickets, the ministry of civil aviation will also be required to make sure whether or not the stranded NRIs would be allowed to enter their targeted country and the extent of travel restrictions in those countries.

Simultaneously, the cost of travel will have to be met by the passengers themselves and “only asymptomatic passengers would be allowed to board the flight.”

The MHA also underlined the protocols that have been instructing the repatriation of Indians who had been stranded abroad. While the ministry has said that Indians stranded abroad need to register with their Indian missions in that country, priority will be given to cases of distress, including migrant workers who have been laid off as well as people faced with the expiry of short term visas, those with a medical emergencies, pregnant women and the elderly. Those required to return to India due to death of family member, and students will also be given priority.

However, even amongst the returnees, only asymptomatic passengers will be allowed on board the repatriation flight.