India has decided to allow foreign tourists into the country, beginning with granting tourist visas to those travelling by chartered flights from 15 October and those by regular planes from 15 November.
However, all due protocols and norms relating to COVID-19 as notified by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare from time to time, will be adhered to by the foreign tourists, carriers bringing them into India and all other stakeholders at landing stations, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said in a statement on Thursday (7 October).
The ministry also announced that with this, the restrictions placed on visa and international travel since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic stand further eased given the present overall pandemic situation.
The MHA said that it had been receiving representations from several State Governments as well as various stakeholders in the tourism sector to start Tourist Visas also, to allow foreign tourists to come to India.
"Therefore, the MHA consulted all major stakeholders like the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of Civil Aviation, Ministry of Tourism and various State Governments where foreign tourists are expected to arrive," the ministry said.
"After considering various inputs, the ministry has decided to begin granting of fresh tourist visas for foreigners coming to India through chartered flights with effect from 15 October 2021" the MHA said.
Foreign tourists entering into India by flights other than chartered aircraft would be able to do so only with effect from 15 November 2021 on fresh tourist visas, it added.
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