Travel News: In a bid to revive tourism, the Central Government has decided to make a graded relaxation in visa and travel restrictions for more categories of foreign nationals and Indian nationals who are planning to enter India or leave India. This comes as a relief for people who have been stranded in India and abroad. A decision has been taken to permit all OCI and PIO cardholders and other foreign nationals who are intending to visit India for any purpose, except on a Tourist Visa can enter by air or water routes through authorized airports and seaport immigration check posts. “The government has decided to make a graded relaxation in visa and travel restrictions for more categories of foreign nationals and Indian nationals who wish to enter or leave India,” read the order from the Union Home Ministry. This includes flights operated under Vande Bharat Mission, Air Transport Bubble arrangements, or by any nonscheduled commercial flights as allowed by the Ministry of Civil Aviation, as per Zee News. However, people who are willing to travel must adhere to the guidelines of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare regarding quarantine and other COVID-19 health-related norms. Under this graded relaxation, the Government of India has also decided to restore with immediate effect all existing visas (except electronic visa, Tourist Visa, and Medical Visa). If the validity of such visas has expired, fresh visas of appropriate categories can be obtained from Indian Mission/Posts concerned, read the report. Foreign nationals who are intending to visit India for any medical treatment can now apply for a Medical Visa including for their medical attendants. This decision by the Central Government will now enable foreign nationals to come to India for various purposes such as business, conferences, employment, studies, research, medical purposes, etc.
With this decision in place, it seems that the deep dent felt by the tourism industry will slowly start to heal.