For businesses and conferences and medical purposes, including medical workers in India the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has returned the electronic visa system (e-visa) for foreign people from 156 countries intending to visit India. E-visa is still to be restored for tourists.
Although 171 countries have access to this facility, it was re-established in 2020 only for 156 countries after restrictions had been announced. The following list has excluded China, United Kingdom, Canada, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia.
“e-Visa under the following categories viz. e-business visa, e-medical visa, e-medical attendant visa and e-conference visa has been restored with immediate effect", said the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).
The relaxation for foreign visitors comes in the aftermath of a deadly second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has claimed 1.7 lakh lives so far.
India, after using standard visas of missions and ambassies abroad, had previously imposed visa restrictions on October 2, 2020 that allowed foreigners to travel to India for business, conferences, work, education, research and health purposes.
An e-visa is provided in five categories — tourist, business, conference, medical, and medical attendant.
The MHA suspended international air travel from and to 107 immigration checkposts the day before the beginning of the first phase of the national lock-down of 21 days following the COVID-19 pandemic on 23 March 2020.
Later in the year, the Ministry permitted "business, medical and employment" visas under an air bubble scheme to be made available to foreigners in the US, United Kingdom, Germany and France.
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