The much-awaited liberalised visa policy will roll out on Saturday, months after it was cleared by the Cabinet on November 30. The new categories will also include intern and film visas besides medical, tourism, business and employment. The move assumes significance as the services sector accounts for about 60 per cent of India’s GDP but its share in world exports of services remains at a low 3.15 per cent.
A home ministry statement said, “The liberalised visa structure is ready for implementation from tomorrow. These include liberalisation of the e-Visa scheme, Tourist, Business, Medical and Employment visas. New categories of visas such as Intern Visa and Film Visa have been introduced.”
E-visas have further been divided into e-tourist visa, e-business visa and e-medical visa. The window for application under e-visa scheme has been increased from 30 to 120 days and duration of stay on e-visa has been increased from 30 to 60 days with dual entry on e-Tourist and e-Business visa and triple entry on e-Medical visa.
A new category, Intern visa, has been introduced for foreigners intending to pursue internships in Indian companies, educational institutions and NGOs, subject to conditions. The period of visa is restricted to the duration of internship programme or one year, whichever is less. Visas will also be provided under the film category, with maximum duration of a year.