India relaxes visa rules; engineers, healthcare professionals can now enter country

India relaxes visa rules; engineers, healthcare professionals can now enter country

Government of India on Wednesday decided to ease travel restrictions for a limited section of foreign nationals. As per the new guidelines, foreign nationals that can be placed in selective categories will be allowed to enter the country.

First and foremost, foreign healthcare professionals, researchers, engineers, and technicians whose services are required in laboratories, factories and other facilities part of the Indian healthcare sector will be allowed to enter the country. To avail of this relaxation, the individual will have to secure a letter of invitation from a recognized and registered healthcare facility, registered pharmaceutical company or accredited university based in India.

Foreign nationals with expertise in engineering, managerial, or design who wish to travel to India on behalf of foreign business entities located in the country will also be permitted to travel to India. These entities include all manufacturing units, design units, software and IT units along with both banking and non-banking financial sector firms.

Businessmen/businesswomen based out of foreign countries will also be permitted on a business visa (except B-3 visa for sports) in non-scheduled commercial/chartered flights.

In addition, registered business entities in India can also invite foreign technical specialists and engineers for installation, repair and maintenance of foreign-origin machinery and equipment facilities. This relaxation will apply to installation of equipment or repair subject to warranty, after sales servicing and commercial items repair.

"Foreign nationals that fall in the mentioned categories will have to obtain a fresh business visa or employment visa, as applicable, from the Indian Missions/Posts abroad. Foreign nationals holding a valid long term multiple entry Business visa [other than B-3 visa for sports] issued by the Indian Missions/Posts abroad would have to get the Business visa re-validated from the Indian Mission/Post concerned. Such foreign nationals would not be permitted to travel to India on the strength of any electronic visa obtained earlier," a release from the Press Information Bureau (PIB) said.