• It is absolutely necessary to obtain a student visa to go to India
It is necessary to obtain a visa to visit India. To visit India, there are many types of visas like student visa, tourist visa, employment visa, yoga visa, etc.
Amongst these the easiest one to obtain is the tourist visa because it is very easy to arrange for the required documents.
For all other visas it is necessary to arrange various documents. Among those documents there are some which you cannot get without the help of people in India.
Here I will explain about the procedure for obtaining student visa which is necessary if you want to study in Indian universities or institutes.
• Following is the procedure for obtaining student visa
- Search the university you want to study in.
You can search mainly on the internet. There are too many colleges and that can confuse you. People who can read English can rather easily obtain information on the internet, but you should be careful because sometimes the information can be wrong. You can set the criteria of searching whether the college has a system for accepting foreign students.
- Obtaining provisional admission letter and Government Registration Certificate from the university or institute you wish to study in.
Obtaining the provisional admission letter is the most difficult. Most of the universities and institutes in India do not require you to take any entrance exam (some of them need you to take a simple English test). Nowadays you can get the admission form of any university online, but eventually you have to deal with them through e-mail for obtaining the provisional admission letter. But the people there usually take a lot of time to respond to e-mails, and sometimes they do not even process your request. Therefore I recommend you to either take help from your friends living in India, or go to India and do all the procedures by yourself or hire an agent to do it for you.
- Submit the required documents at visa application centre
Go to the visa application centre and submit the following documents after obtaining the provisional admission letter (or other similar documents):
- Documents necessary for visa application (as on February 2014):
- Passport having validity of more than 180 days and having more than 2 pages blank. Your passport will be kept with them for a certain time hence be careful if you need it in that time.
- 1 Photo (Visa size 5cm*5cm)
The photo should have a white background and be front facing. If there are changes in the dimension, you will have to re-do it. Hence please read the instructions carefully. You can take them at instant photo centres too, but since the photo shops near visa application centres are accustomed to these requirements it is better to go there.
- Correct application form signed at 2 places (sign should be same as on the passport)
Please apply here from the Indian visa application website. After filling the application form you can take a print out. After taking the print out you just have to sign at the 2 places.
- Prepare a bio-data
Prepare a bio-data mentioning your educational history, qualifications, address and reason for studying abroad.
- Students below the age of 18 years need to submit a ‘No Objection Letter’ written in English by their parents (written on an A4 size paper and signed by parents).
- Proof of balance deposit in personal bank account in English (account should be on your name), or a written oath by either parent in English and the proof of balance deposit in their personal bank account.
Proof of balance deposit in English can be obtained from the bank. Depending on the bank, it will take 4 to 5 days for it. Also even on submitting proof of balance deposit in your own personal bank account, they might ask for the written oath also, hence please keep one with you. I will explain about preparing this in another article.
- Original provisional admission letter and its copies (admission letter should be of a full time course from an approved educational institution)
- Receipt of payment of fees and its copies.
- Travel itinerary (with the letter head of the travel company or airline booking confirmation)
- Self request letter mentioning the name of university or institute and place of residence in India (with sign as on the passport).
Prepare this using Word. I will explain about it in another article. But mention here that you will live in India on your own expenses.
- Document from a government organisation stating that the university or institute is approved by the government.
This seems to be a new rule. There are some institutes which have also not yet obtained it hence please confirm about it from them.
After arranging for these documents, go to the visa application centre and submit them.
- Obtaining the visa
The visa can be collected 4 to 5 business days after submitting the documents. If there are any discrepancies in the documents you may get a call from the centre and be told to reapply. Sometimes they can ask for documents not mentioned on the website, but don’t give up!
Above is the procedure for obtaining Indian student visa. Depending on the institute or type of course you may not require a student visa. In those cases you can come by a tourist visa (for 6 months). But just by doing the above procedure you can get used to some English. All the Best!