A little while back I got a booking for a guest. I thought he was Indian, so didn’t ask him if he was an Indian citizen. (I’ve now changed things so that I ask whether someone is an Indian citizen in my initial response to a booking request.) Anyway, he said he’s a US citizen. So I wrote to him to say that he needs to show his passport and visa information as part of the Form C process. He responded with
I don’t carry my passport or OCI; can bring my copy of both if that Works
The OCI (Overseas Citizenship of India) is basically a lifetime Indian visa (unless the govt takes it away), typically for people of Indian descent/origin and their spouses/relatives. Despite the name, it does not confer citizenship.
So my question is whether I should make a fuss about this or not. Here’s my (unsent) reply. I wasn’t sure what tack I should take about this - Indian laws aren’t clear about this sort of thing. And I have no reason to think anything fishy is going on, but one never knows. I was able to find a Linkedin page in the name of the guest, and it checks out with what he said - he’s a banker. Not the most communicative person, but that doesn’t mean much either.
I could take a hard line and tell him that he needs to bring his documents if he wants to check in, but it is worth possibly creating a situation over this? One more data point - I’m actually (still) not sure if I need to submit Form C for OCI holders. I don’t have any definite officail information about that, one way or the other.
Unsent reply follows:
Why don’t you carry your passport or OCI? I thought that foreigners were legally required to carry passport and visa information when travelling, booking into hotels etc. I’d certainly prefer to see the originals. Apart from other considerations, the copies might be illegible or incomplete.
In any case, please send me your copies by email, so I can see how they look. Thanks.
He’s due to arrive on Monday 9th December.
ADDENDUM: It looks like OCI holders indeed do not need to fill in Form C, per http://egazette.nic.in/WriteReadData/2016/168653.pdf
The relevant sections start at
- In the principal order, after paragraph 14, the following paragraphs shall be inserted, namely:-
and OCI is mentioned in
(9) The provisions in this paragraph shall not apply to, or in relation to, the persons registered as Overseas Citizen of India Cardholder under the Citizenship Act,1955.