Research Visa for India

Students, professors, doctors, archaeologists, environmentalists, and other professions that require special Visas to enter India for the purposes of conducting research are welcomed through the Research Visa or ‘R’ Visa.

How To Get Research Visa

The below process details the steps that have to be followed by students in order to get a Research Visa to enter India and conduct research in India:

  1. Prepare an application detailing the following:
    • The subject matter of their research.
    • Proof of financial resources.
    • Places that they intend to visit.
    • The specific reason for visiting these places.
    • Details of all previous visits to the country.
    • If the research is being done on specific subjects that relate to the foreign researcher’s own country, an additional 150-word synopsis of the research proposal is required which justifies the reason as to why the research must be conducted in India.
    • The synopsis and application must be submitted to the Indian Mission or Post along with all other relevant documents as required.
    • If the applicant is performing the research as a student of an Indian university, the original admission letter and documents must be submitted. Photocopies and email attachments of admission letters won’t be taken into consideration.
    • If the applicant is performing the research as part of an NGO or is sponsored by an NGO, the relevant documentation needs to be presented at the time of application. The Indian Mission or Post will investigate the background and functions of the NGO and refer the case to MHA, MEA, or any other concerned Ministry of the Indian Government.
  2. Scholars, teachers and professors who wish to travel to India through a Research Visa are only eligible if they have been invited by a Central Educational Institution or a publicly funded State University.
  3. The application should also establish whether the scholar is currently on the alumni rolls of a reputed or recognized educational/research institution. The University Grants Commission, the Association of Indian Universities, and the Human Resource Development Department all maintain lists of approved Indian universities on their official websites.
  4. This application must then be submitted at an Indian Mission or Post for processing.
  5. Indian Missions and Posts are authorized to issue Research Visas based on the applications and synopsis of the abovementioned applicants, except in the following cases:
    • Teachers, scholars, students, and professors applying from PRC Countries, which are China, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sudan and Iraq.
    • Teachers, scholars, students, and professors applying who are of Pakistani origin and Stateless persons.
    • Teachers, scholars, students, and professors whose research work can be classified as either ‘politically sensitive’ or ‘socially sensitive’.
    • Research projects which require visits to ‘Protected’ or ‘Restricted’ areas in India.
  6. The Ministry of External Affairs and the Ministry of Home Affairs will have to give their clearance for the ‘exempted’ applications mentioned above. The Research Visas can be granted, provided the Government ministries don’t find any cause for concern regarding such applications and the results of any research performed.

Information For Dependants Of Research Visa Holders

  • Dependants and family members of Research Visa holders can travel to India through an ‘X’ Visa.
  • The validity duration of this ‘X’ Visa is directly connected to the validity of the Research Visa holder’s Research Visa.
  • The validity duration of the ‘X’ Visa can be given for a shorter period of time than the original Research Visa, if necessary, and this will be decided by Indian Mission or Post.
  • Dependants and family members of Research Visa holders can, if required, obtain a Research or Student Visa of their own, so long as the requirements for the issue of such a Visa are met.
  • X Visas that have been issued to the family members or dependants of Research Visa holders can be converted into Research Visas. The concerned FRO/FRRO can convert these Visas into Research Visas if the applicant fulfils all the requirements of that type of Visa.
  • In case of Research Visas obtained after scrutiny by the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Ministry of External Affairs for applications from otherwise excluded persons (as mentioned above), dependants of these Visa holders will also be subject to the same investigation before approval.


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