Expats with a valid employment visa have to register on the portal.
Indian residents continue to be on the edge as the deadline announced by the Ministry of External Affairs of India looms large for the mandatory registration on the government’s eMigrate platform.
The Indian ministry announced on November 15 that starting January 1, 2019, registration is now mandatory for all Indian nationals holding an employment visa in all the 18-emigration check required (ECR) countries. Expats with a valid employment visa have to register on the portal www.emigrate.gov.in while dependents and people on investor visas were exempted from the registrations.
However, expatriate Indians working in the UAE deplored that the registration process could’ve been simpler, and the announcements made on November 15 could’ve been clearer. All Indians needed an Indian mobile number to avail a one-time password (OTP). Failure to register would result in off-loading of the passenger.
Saifur Habib, a Dubai resident, asked: “I don’t understand why we can’t do the registration using my e-mail. What if I don’t have an Indian number? Also, will I get an immediate confirmation? Do I need that for future purposes.”
Use a relative’s or friend’s number for OTP
In a bid to seek clarification, Khaleej Times has been making repeated calls and sent e-mails to various officials at the Ministry of External Affairs Overseas Employment Division since late last week. The calls went unanswered.
However, after a call was made to the eMigrate Help Desk, +911126887772, an official clarified that the mobile number for the OTP generation does not have to be registered under the applicant’s name.
The helpline personnel said: “The applicant must register on the eMigrate website either 21 days or 24-hours before travel. It is a one-time registration.”
However, if there is a change in employment status or change in job on their return, the registration needs to be repeated.
“You can ask a relative or friend In India to generate the OTP in their mobile number and send them to you, if you don’t have a number that works in the UAE. A PDF document containing a reference number and confirmation will be sent to the applicant’s e-mail ID immediately after the registration has been completed,” he added.
The traveller is not required to carry the document in-person to the Indian airport they are departing from as it will be updated in the system within 24-hours of the travel date. However, the passenger can keep a copy of the e-mail for reference purposes.
The registration requires people to enter their contact details back home as well as the address in the country where the individual is working, work details, passport number, profession, emergency contact details, etc.
However, some residents are also in praise of the new initiative. Girish Pant, a Dubai-based social worker said: “The registration will help the Indian government to reach out to Indians in distress, across the 18 countries, easily.”
What happens when we return from vacation?
People who are travelling to India on their vacations are uncertain about what’s next for them. Several residents also asked what they can do if they are travelling back home for a short, emergency trip.
Shreya Sreenivas, a teacher, said: “My older brother works in the HR and recruitment division of a company. They are very confused on how to advise Indians who are headed to India now, and returning in January.”
“Should I apply before I leave for India? I will be there only for one-day. Does this mean I don’t have enough time to complete the registration? These things could’ve been made clear by the government before they announced the new rules,” added Jithin Giridas, a Sharjah-based tech professional.