One of the good bits in the OCI process is the online status enquiry. To enquire application status, you will need your passport number and either the File (Acknowledgment) No or the Online Registration No. as input for the “Online OCI Enquiry Form” and in no time, you will know the status of your application.

From that I observed, the moment you submit your application you could track it’s progress online. At first it will only show the Date of Acknowledgement, subsequently the other states show as your applications moves from one desk to another. Below is a screenshot of my application status enquiry – this should give you an idea of how long it took for my application to get processed.

Now, it was ready for collection from the HCI. I learnt one could collect it either in person or by post. HCI, on their website affirm their responsibility for my important document with this: “High Commission will not be responsible for loss of documents sent by Post.” (underlined and in bold) – for this reason, I choose to collect it in person. Below is how it went:

Documents required for collection:

  • Print out of the online status report
  • British passport

In Person

The collection has two parts to it:

(a) Submitting the above listed documents

The HCI in London accept documents for OCI stamping only between 0830 and 1200. I arrived at the HCI at 0830, there were two queues – one to go into the HCI (for application submission & enquiry) and the other for submitting the documents for OCI stamping. Make sure you are in the right queue, else you are burning time. If you are visiting the HCI in London, the queue for ‘submitting the passport for OCI stamping’ (or collection as they call it) is the one outside the HCI which leads on to the small counter in the wall (like the ones you’d queue to buy cinema tickets back in the day). The queue was fairly short and it moved quick. Upon submitting the passport and print out of the online status report, the person at the counter gave me a token (a small piece of paper with a number on it) and asked to return the same evening at 1630 for collection. Do not loose the token, they may ask for it at the time of collection.

(b) Collecting the OCI document and the passport

At HCI, London the stamped documents are available for collection only between 1630 and 1700. Arrived at 1625. As I turned into the road that lead to the HCI, I noticed a huge crowd gathered outside HCI – thought there must have been an incident / some sort of trouble. As I closed in, I noticed a member of HCI staff standing just outside the counter where I had submitted the documents that morning: he was shouting out token numbers – he would collect the OCI document and the passport from the counter and hand them over to anyone who had the token number he called out! It was chaotic to say the least; luckily, my number got called within a minute of my arrival. I handed over the token and collected the documents – passport with a Indian visa & a separate OCI booklet (what looks like a passport without pages): there was a sigh of relief when I verified the documents and found everything to be correct. There ended my OCI journey.

By Post

Some of my friends had availed this option about a year ago and it worked for them. To collect the OCI documents and have the OCI visa stamped on your passport, you will need to send in your passport and a print out of the online status report along with a special delivery self addressed envelope to:

OCI Section,
High Commission of India, London
India House, Aldwych, London WC2B 4NA

In this case, the lead time to get back your documents might be about 4 – 7 days.


52 thoughts on “OCI status enquiry / collection

  1. great information you put together!
    Regarding the OCI status inquiry, do you remember the order in which the information had been inputed? My status is still showing under process, and its being exactly a month, or 23 business days. Moreover, “Photo/Signature at Mission” line is not appearing on my status screen, so I have no idea whether it has been scanned or not. Does this line shows up after registration at Mission changed to “granted” or were you able to view this line while your status remain at under process stage?? Any thoughts? Thank you so much!

    • Thanks. From what I recall, in my case, once the “Photo/Signature at Mission” changed to “Scanned“, “Registration Status at Mission” indicated “Under process” for quite some time. Once that was done (changed to “Granted”), the others followed in quick succession. Also, I was able to view all the sections (lines) all the time, they didn’t seem to dynamically appear. I would like to think their processing times vary depending on a number of things; hopefully, your application will go through soon. Good luck.

  2. Thank you for your good memories:-) Now, I am wondering whether each embassy/consulate have the option to either show the applications all the line items or just a part of it. Of all the reviews I’ve read, the Photo/signature line does shows up. I am so tired of being worried all the time about this long road with the OCI. I submitted my application at Edinburgh Consulate back in April, and it was only acknowledge in September. Hopefully, this is coming to an end, and that granted soon appears on my status. Thank you!

  3. Dear Tickingtigers, Many thanks for this useful post. I have a query regarding the postal application. Do I need to send Return envelops at the time of the initial application itself OR should I send it when the status shows as the Documents ready for collection also g with British passport and status printout?

    Also do I need to post just one return envelop for a family of three?

    Greatly appreciate for your precious time, and helping others on this journey.

    The HCI website does not have any of this info as usual, and there is no way to reach HCI staff either through phone or email. They just never respond.

    • Hi there,
      Thanks for your kind comments. Here is what I gather: you need to send in the return envelope, British passport and the status print out when the online status says that it is ready for collection. Since at the time of applying you are making one application for the family and not applying individually, you need to send in just one return envelope – make sure that you send in a big enough envelope. Hope this helps and good luck with your application!

  4. Dear TicklingTiger, Just want to know if there is any other way of tracking my OCI application other than the online method? My form is received by London HCI on 14-Dec-2012, but still no acknowledgement.

    I understand the phone number and email do not actually work, so is there any other way of knowing the status?

    Would they receive the fax at least and update my status?

    Or woukd it be worth visiting the embassy, if I dont receive any status update in another 10 days or so?

    Appreciate your help.

    • Hi there,
      I must say I am not an authority on this subject. Here is what I learn from personal & others experience: If one made their application about Christmas – the processing times are likely to take longer than average; so I would suggest you wait a few more days before you approach them. Also, I gather, in some cases when ones’ personal situation is well explained, they have responded to fax – you might want to try that before you plan on a personal visit.

    • Hi, From what I noticed they seem to hand over the passports to any person who had a valid token. In practice, however, they say that the applicant should collect it; and in case of applying as a family, any one of the applicant can collect.

  5. Hi,sent in my application in september and approved mid november.According to hci website,i sent return special delivery envelope at the time of application as mentioned on the website and now find that they require my passport for stamping.On enquiry the reply is refer to oci website.
    What do i do now?.I am unable to travel 130 miles to london to have my passport endorsed.

    • Hi, As far as I know unless it is a joint application, one cannot collect other persons’s / partners’ passport. Perhaps they may entertain it under certain circumstances. If you don’t want to take a chance, you might want to try availing the Postal option – where in you send in the required documents by post, and it is returned by post. HTH.

  6. Hi there!My OCI was granted way back in aug 19th 2012.I could not go to the Indian High Commission as I had a fall and injured My knee.So I sent My wife instead with My passport,online status and a covering letter.My wife handed My passport in and collected My passport back in the evening the same day.Job done no problem.

  7. i send my application on 1st feb, it was signed for on 2nd but still there is no acknowledgement of this on oci enquiry, how long does it get for acknowledgement? cn i chase it up? please help

    • Hi there, the screen shot attached to this page gives you an indication of how long each stage took for my application. If you have a pressing need to expedite the process, I would recommend you send a fax to the HCI explaining your situation. They seem to respond to fax better than any other form of communication. HTH.

  8. I recall someone say that the HCI used to issue a fixed number of tokens in one day (something like 150 tokens), for collection of OCIs.
    Does anyone know if this is still the case?
    Trying to workout if I need to queue up from very early in the morning, like the good old days!

    • Not sure what the limit on the number of tokens for a day happens to be. Perhaps someone visiting these pages will share that. From my experience, if you visited about 8:30 am, you will be one among the first few for the day.

    • Although they say (on their website) that only the applicant can collect the documents; in my experience, anyone with the token (issued at the time of submitting the passport for stamping) can collect the documents.

  9. i submitted my application for OCI on 12 February 2013 and still it is not acknowledged, how long it is going to acknowledge?

    • Hi Manu!I understand that You submitted Your OCI application on the 12th of feb 2013. But You have not mentioned whether You forwarded Your application in Scotland or London. From what I know if You submitted Your application in London it takes about 3 or 4 days. But if You forwarded Your application in Scotland it takes a very long time to get acknowledged. I hope this helps.

    • Hi, if you are also applying along with your husband then, I am sure you are allowed to on his behalf. But, if you are just want to represent his application, I am not sure if they will entertain that. It’s beyond me to think why they would not entertain a partner submitting the other’s application. In case you intend to submit just your partner’s (husband’s) application, then carry some document to prove your relationship to him – you never know what they ask for – if you have things handy it might just save your another trip! Good luck.

  10. Hi really useful information here. Thanks a ton to the author and your efforts to put it on here. I was looking for this information for ages on the OCI website but alas found nothing that explained the collection process as simply as this one did !!! Thanks again.

  11. i did a family application for 3 x oci by post in HCI london back in feb, mine and my son has just got printed status, and my wife’s came back, and i re sent it with the extra documents requested, but i just wanted to ask, does my wife’s application then go back to the bottom of the pile again? and if they send it back a 3rd time, will my postal order expire?

    • Hi there, Here is what I think: Though you applied as a family, the applications are judged on an individual basis. The result of your parter’s application has no bearing on the outcome of your application. Given that, I am guessing that your partner’s application might go to the bottom of the pile. I’m afraid I do not know who all that might impact the validity of your postal order. Hopefully, someone on this forum who faced a similar situation / in the know will help. Best wishes.

  12. After showing the status as “Document received in London”, i sent my British passport to Indian embassy in London by recorded delivery post with a self addressed envelope for returning them. The royal mail tracking system shows my passports being received at the embassy on 26 th March 2013. I have not received my passports back yet, I am worried now as it is already 6 days now. What is the normal turn around.

    • Hi, I think the bank holidays would have influenced the delay. I hope you have received it by now. From what some of my friends experienced when they sent it by post it took about 2 weeks to receive it back.

  13. I have submitted my appliction for oci card on 22 February 2013 .plz can i know the dispatched of my oci card .i need this information because i have already taken the ticket to India on 15th april .plz do the needfull.how long it is takes.tx

  14. Hi my sons application was approved and oci number are issued but they are travelling on 20th april and it is 10th april now will he have them on time and can he travel with printed document many thanks

    • Hi there, You if have applied by post – the average lead times are 4 – 6 working days. If you are applying in person – and willing to invest time, you should have it in 2 days. Hope you got it sorted. Enjoy your trip.

  15. Does anyone know if the daily limit for OCI tokens apply only to OCI Application submissions or do they also apply to OCI booklet and visa Collections?

    • Hi, For submission of OCI applications the max number of tokens per day is 175. I am not sure how many they issue for other purposes. Hopefully, some one here might be able to share that.

  16. i had send my document for oci on 25th feb 2013 but my oci status is showing process not acknowledge or wrong passport number .i am totally confused wit this message.please help me in this matter .thank you

    • Hi there, the feedback that OCI status enquiry provides is not very helpful. It is possible that the passport number you mentioned on the form might not match your actual passport number and hence the error. If might be useful to send a fax to the HCI with (a) your passport surrender certificate copy (b) your surrendered passport’s photo page (c) Letter explaining your situation supported by the screen shot of the online status report. Hope you manage to get the issue resolved. If you have the time, you might want to take all the above and go to the HCI instead. Good luck.

    • Hi I had the same problem for weeks I was wondering if my documents reached the High Commission or not. You might have an incorrect GRLI… number, what you can do is click on the link on the left hand side which says ‘Get Forgotten ID’ or something, then type in your passport number and your date of birth and if your application has been acknowledged it will give you three GBRLI…numbers click on the middle one and type in your passport number again and hopefully you should be able to track your application.


  17. It does take a very long time for the High Commission to acknowledge your application. I applied by post on 23rd February and they acknowledged my application on the 21th March but still hasn’t been dispatched from Delhi.

    I think it takes around 8 weeks if you apply by post.

  18. my timeline was this

    Posted Application from Scotland – 6th of Feb 2013
    Application Acknowledged by HCI London – 27th of Feb 2013
    Scanned – 13th of Mar 2013
    Granted – 19th of Mar 2013
    Printed – 30th of Mar 2013
    Dispatched from Delhi – 08 Apr 2013
    Received at London – 11 Apr 2013

    The daily limit of tokens issued do not apply to OCI Collection of booklet/visa, only to OCI application submissions.

  19. When i gave my passport for oci stamping… they said the name on the visa is not correct…….they are going to send it back for correction…….it is nearly 3 months now….how i will know wen it receive in london for collection/?

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