Planning a trip to India soon? South African travellers, Indian nationals and non-Resident Indians (NRIs) can now apply for various categories of India visas and some consular services at the VFS Global Visa Application Centres in Johannesburg, Durban, and Cape Town.
This was announced by VFS Global on 22 November. Ruchi Ghanashyam, High Commissioner of India to the Republic of South Africa and the Kingdom of Lesotho, inaugurated the centre in Johannesburg.
“I hope that with their vast experience in providing outsourcing services for visa and passport services across the world in a number of countries, VFS Global in South Africa would also provide excellent services at its centre in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town to the applicants. Applicants in South Africa can also obtain e-Tourist Visa directly through https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html,” Ghanashyam said.
VFS Global has provided these services to the government of India since 2007 with a total of 43 centres in 10 countries offering visa and some consular services for India Missions.
South Africa is the first country on the continent that it has extended visa processing to on behalf of the Indian government amongst the 10 countries. VFS Global will be responsible only for accepting and processing applications for India visas from applicants living in South Africa. These applications will still be assessed and adjudicated by the Consulate General of India in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town.
India has become a popular destination among residents of South Africa, not just for commonly sought categories like business, tourism, and education, but also for medical treatment, journalism or research. The centres will offer stations conveniently located for easily accessible visa applications.
The centres will also offer longer operating hours to enable applicants to apply at convenient times in modern and spacious facilities. Dedicated staff will assist with visa queries, and a call centre and email support will allow applicants to follow up on the status of applications. The process is 100% secure to handle passports, documents and personal information. The website will also include easily accessible information about issues such as visa categories, requirements, checklists and applicable fees.
“I am pleased to announce [the] extension of our association with the government of India with the launch of passport, visa and some consular services in South Africa,” said Jiten Vyas, COO – Africa, VFS Global, commenting on the beginning of operations in South Africa.“India was the first country where VFS Global set up its operations almost 15 years ago. The long-standing relationship we share with the government of India reflects their faith in our abilities and efficiencies proven over the years. As travel between the two countries grows, we are confident of providing world-class services that will only enhance the experiences of travellers to and from India and South Africa.”