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I've obtained U.S. citizenship after previously being an Indian citizen since birth. Now, say that I want to apply for a brief 6-month tourist visa for India after my naturalization. (Yes, I know about the PIO and OCI schemes, but this question is specifically for applying for a visa.)

For applying for an Indian visa, I'm directed to http://indianvisaonline.gov.in to complete the online visa form. However, I am confused as to what to enter in a specific question.

On the third page, where I am asked what visa I want to apply for, there is a question that asks if I have ever visited India before. When I choose "Yes", I am asked to enter the details of my previous visa. However, I have never had an Indian visa before and have last entered India with my Indian passport (because I was an Indian citizen).

The fields for entering the previous visa details are mandatory, yet I have nothing to fill in them. What should I do?

  • @pnuts I couldn't find a link to contact those who maintained the form, so I posted here instead. (though I would have probably had to post here anyway) – gparyani Jul 24 '14 at 21:09
  • @pnuts That's what I was thinking of doing, but I was afraid that an official may misinterpret that. – gparyani Jul 24 '14 at 21:19
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    Just as a check: although the US considers that you gave up your Indian citizenship when you gained US citizenship, are you sure that India considers it the same way? Is it possible that India still considers you an Indian citizen? I have heard that this is the case for Russia. – Nate Eldredge Jul 25 '14 at 7:54
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    @NateEldredge India does not recognize dual nationality. By taking US citizenship you are assumed to have renounced your Indian citizenship. But there is something called "Person of Indian Origin" which grants some privileges. – DJClayworth Jul 25 '14 at 13:07
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    @NateEldredge actually, the US generally does not consider that you have given up your prior citizenship when you naturalize (this, despite the text of the citizenship oath). – phoog Jun 16 '15 at 21:13
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Your mileage may vary, and it certainly is a grey zone, but I'd just tick "No".

  1. Since you were an Indian citizen, you've technically never visited India before, you've only been a resident there.
  2. The visa application is asking whether Mr Damryfbfnetsi, citizen of the USA, has ever visited India before. Since you have not visited as an American, the answer is "No".

Update: The visa application form also asks if your current citizenship (in your case USA) was by birth or naturalization, and if naturalization, what your previous citizenship was. You can and should truthfully answer "India" here, which will hopefully make the situation clear enough.

The visa application form also asks for your place of birth, which (presumably) will be in India as well, but since you've already declared your past citizenship this is unlikely to be a problem.

  • I'll try this and see what happens. – gparyani Jul 25 '14 at 2:24
  • What if he is denied on the grounds of not disclosing his citizenship of the country earlier? Is there a way to do this in the Indian Visa form? – Aditya Somani Jul 25 '14 at 2:30
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    On further inspection, there's a "previous nationality" question where you can select "India". Amending answer accordingly. – jpatokal Jul 25 '14 at 2:32
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    @pnuts Doesn't matter, they haven't visited India with their current citizenship. But there is no perfect answer to this question: people are square pegs and the visa application only has round holes. – jpatokal Jul 25 '14 at 6:01
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    Being born in a country is not a crime, and the OP lists that they were previously Indian in their application, so I don't see how answering "No" to that silly "visa when last visited" question would be wrong. Why not think of it as "No, I've never had an Indian visa", because that's what they're actually asking for? – jpatokal Jul 25 '14 at 11:27

protected by Community Jun 16 '15 at 21:18

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