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Home / Surrender Certificate Help Guide – Surrendering your Indian passport & applying for OCI at the same time

This article will answer all the questions you have on the surrender certificate process.

Once you obtain your Surrender Certficate, you can use Reload OCI Service to obtain your OCI.

The rules are getting more and more complicated – and Reload OCI keeps up to date with the VFS guidelines so you do not have to. We offer a one stop shop – a quick and efficient way to obtain your OCI – and we guarantee you will pass first time around or we will redo the whole application for you completely free of charge. No other immigration consultancy can offer this.

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A Complete Guide To Surrendering the Indian Passport For British Citizenship

As many of our clients know and the reason why our many clients use a service like Reload OCI is because the VFS guide is sadly inadequate and the information contained is not at all helpful.

We have had our consultants look over the VFS guidelines, and consult several immigration lawyers for the entire procedure for cancelling the Indian passport and obtaining a surrender certificate and we have documented the entire procedure.

Here is a step-by-step analysis of the procedure for obtaining a surrender certificate following the cancellation of your Indian passport.

So first things first, before you can apply for an OCI card online if you have an Indian passport you must have a surrender certificate.

There is no way around this as you will need to Surrender your Indian passport when you get a foreign citizenship and the embassy will issue you with a Surrender certificate at this time as a surrender certificate is a mandatory document required for your online OCI application form. 

Why must I surrender the Indian passport?

This is a question we are asked by clients regularly, and I am sure you’re probably wondering why you need to surrender your Indian passport in the first place.

Here is the official reason set forth by the Indian High Commission:

According to the 1955 Indian Citizenship Act, people of Indian origin are not allowed to have dual citizenship.

The law requires you to surrender and let go of your Indian passport at the nearest Indian mission in other to renunciate your Indian citizenship.

You’ll need to surrender your Indian passport, and then obtain a Surrender Certificate as evidence of your cancelled Indian passport before you can apply for Consular Services/Visa or OCI Card.

We hope this clears up this question!

Renouncing your Indian Citizenship

Your British Naturalization certificate is issued to you when you have your final ceremony and this is the proof of your British Citizenship.

The next step after receiving your Naturalization certificate is to renounce your Indian passport and acquire a Surrender certificate.

This article is a comprehensive guide on the procedures involved in surrendering your Indian passport on acquiring a British citizenship. This detailed guide will teach you everything you need to know about how to cancel your Indian passport when you obtain a foreign citizenship.

How to surrender your Indian passport and apply for OCI simultaneously

If you already have a British passport and intend to apply for an OCI card there is usually no way to apply for a surrender certificate and OCI at the same time even if you are planning to travel to India on short notice due to family issues. However you can always try contacting VFS personally.

If you apply for a Surrender Certificate by a Postal application, then you will need a minimum of 10 working days for this to be processed. This does not include the period that your application is in transit to and from the High Commission or the Consulate General. You will need to send your valid Indian passport. If you have an expired Indian passport you will not need to send this. 

Processing time for a surrender certificate

According to the website, processing times may vary depending on the case and some applications might require more processing time than others and the process takes between 5 to 10 business days.

Timeline for Surrender Certificate and Indian Passport

You must surrender your Indian passport within 90 days (or else face the penalties) of obtaining any foreign nationality.

The date affixed on your naturalization is the date you acquired the British citizenship not the date of issue of your British Passport.

Am I still allowed to travel with my Indian passport when I have not surrendered my indian passport?

Your Indian passport is still valid for travel three months after you obtain your British Citizenship. The 3-month period of grace starts from the date you acquire the foreign citizenship which is the exact date your Naturalization certificate was issued.

The 1967 Indian Passport Act has penalized the act of traveling with an Indian passport after the expiration of the three-month period of grace.

Penalties on Surrender Certificate and Indian Passport

You should be aware that you travel on your Indian Passport – after 90 days you will be fined for each journey you make. The penalty can go up to over a £1000.00

We have had clients who have kept their Indian passports after acquiring a foreign nationality (and renew them when they expire) and travel with them. 

It is a criminal offence to travel with the Indian passport once the three-month period of grace expires, once you acquire another citizenship.

It is a punishable offence. A grade scale is used to calculate the penalty. This grade scale is dependent on how many trips the offender undertakes on the Indian Passport after acquiring a foreign citizenship.

The Penalty for misuse of Indian passport would be imposed if the last held Indian passport expired on or after 1 January 2005 and it is retained beyond three years, i.e. not surrendered or the PIO travelled on this passport beyond the grace period of three months or the validity of the last held Indian passport was renewed after acquiring foreign nationality

If you’re under any of the categories above, you must address a written declaration to the Indian High Commission in the UK with a detailed explanation of your reasons.

According to the rules provided on the VFS website, the penalty cannot be reduced or waived.

Surrender Certificate Passport Photo Specification

Here’s a list of documents required if you became a British Citizenship on or after 01 June 2010.

  • Two recent 2 inch x 2 inch photo – available at Reload in Paddington we can take care of these for you
OCI Photo specifications

OCI Photo specifications

Renunciation Declaration for Surrender Certificate

A person who has lost or misplaced his/her Indian Passport and is unable to produce it on demand, cannot be issued a Surrender Certificate because you need to provide the Indian passport before you can be issued a surrender certificate.

In cases like this, you need to apply for a “Renunciation Declaration” along with a copy of your Indian passport. There must be a remark to the effect that you failed to surrender your original Indian passport.
You must also provide a police report and a Notarized Affidavit so you don’t commit passport misuse.

Deemed Surrender Certificate: You must provide a copy of your first British passport and a photocopy of your last Indian passport if you want to apply for Deemed surrender.
Note: This list was informed by the documents I provided for my surrender certificate. I was able to obtain my surrender certificate based on this list, but I am however, not guaranteeing that the exact same documents will be required of you – The Indian High Commission can decide to ask you for additional documentation.

How do you self attest your copy for your surrender certificate application

Make a photocopy of the original document

Write the statement on the photocopy “True copy of the original”

Sign below this statement.

Submit the self-attested photocopy with the application.

Retain the original.

Applying for a surrender certificate

The Indian High Commission has outsourced the process of surrendering the Indian passport (including other Passport/Visa/Select Consular services) to the UK’s VFS (and in the US Cox & Kings).
The implication of this is that:

Your application for Indian citizenship renunciation has to go through the VFS not the High Commission.

You can also submit your application personally at any of the VFS centres.

You must book an appointment before you apply, and this is very sacrosanct as your application will not

be considered if you don’t book ahead.

Here are the VFS centres for you to choose from:

  • VFS London-Goswell
  • VFS London-Hounslow
  • VFS Belfast
  • VFS Birmingham
  • VFS Bradford
  • VFS Cardiff
  • VFS Edinburgh
  • VFS Glasgow
  • VFS Leicester
  • VFS Liverpool
  • VFS Manchester

The Surrender Certificate application process

There’s a security personnel at the entrance to attend to you when you arrive at your centre of choice. The security personnel then conducts preliminary checks on your filled application form, your appointment letter, after which you’ll be issued a token number.

Next, you take a seat, while you wait for your number to appear on a screen in their waiting room. Reload OCI always advises its clients to take a tablet or something to entertain you for an hour. There can be a long wait.

After that, you’ll be asked by the officer in front of the counter to submit all the necessary documents and then pay a passport surrender fee. You’ll then be advised on all the tentative timelines, and then you’ll be given a payment receipt.

The officer at the counter will take down your email address and phone number to update you about your application.

Costs for Surrender Certificate and Ways to pay at VFS

Payments for your surrender of your Indian passport can be made in the following ways:

Cash is accepted at the VFS India Visa Application Centre

Bank drafts or postal orders can be made at the visa application centres made payable to “VF Services UK Ltd”

Credit cards & Debit Card – Visa Electron, Maestro and Solo are also accepted at VFS centres.

According to the rules of the High commission, an applicant cannot make his/her payment by cheque.

Surrender Certificate payment methods for Postal Applications

This will have to be checked with VFS when you are posting your application, but at the time of posting from a post office, you can make a postal order through Royal Mail. Do not send cash or credit card details along with your application via post. If a family is applying together, you can pay the fees and the service charges for all the members by one draft or postal order.

Fee for surrender of passport/ renunciation of Citizenship

The VFS Service fee for all surrender applications is £7.44 inclusive of applicable VAT. All the applicants are requested to include the service fee while organising their payments. There is no online payment facility available for Surrender of Indian passport service.

Mode of payment could be Cash, Debit (we do not accept credit cards), Postal Order or Bank Draft payable to “VF Services UK Ltd”

The Government of India has fixed a fee for renouncing the Indian Citizenship / Surrender of Indian Passport based on the date, the Person of Indian Origin, has acquired British/Foreign Citizenship.

  • British citizenship obtained on or before the 31st of May 2010: The required fee is £22 (and it covers Consular Surcharge and Misc service charge). You don’t have to pay any passport surrendering fee. Yu will be charged £7.44 (VAT inclusive) by VFS for services making it a total of £29.44.
  • British citizenship obtained on or after the 1st of June 2010: Here there is a passport surrender fee of £119, which includes £117 embassy fee and £2 consular charges. It also includes a £7.44 VFS service fee (VAT inclusive), making a total of £126.44.
  • Obtained British citizenship and has a passport that expired ten years ago: A “Deemed Surrender Certificate” will be issued to you in this case, and it will cost you about £20 including a £2 Consular Surcharge and £7.44 as VFS service fee, amounting to £29.44 for your Deemed surrender Certificate.
Miscellaneous Service fee for surrender of passport / renunciation of citizenship (for applicants who have already acquired foreign citizenship till 31.5.2010) 22 7.44 29.44
Fee for surrender of passport/ renunciation of Citizenship (for applicants who acquire foreign citizenship with effect from 1.6.2010) 119 7.44 126.44

*Please Note:

All High Commission/Consulate/fees once tendered are non–refundable

The fee in the table is inclusive of the £2 Consular Surcharge.

More information can be found here

Collecting your Surrender Certificate / renunciation certificate

The renunciation certificate / surrender certificate will be sent to you by courier/post as soon as the request is processed.

When applying for your surrender certificate, you must provide a self-addressed A4 envelope (Special Delivery) for return delivery.

You can also ask the advisor at your application centre for available delivery courier services, but it is better to go with the Special Delivery envelope, as it is more affordable and can easily be tracked via Royal Mail website.

Lost your Indian Passport – How do you obtain a Surrender Certificate?

Please follow this link to our article on what to do if you have lost indian passport

If you have any questions on the OCI card Process, please email us at:

Email us

You can send your surrender of Indian passport application by post to VFS’s centralized postal visa application centre in Hayes 

From this link you will be able to book an appointment for a Surrender certificate

Click on “Schedule an appointment” and choose the VFS Centre, the number of your application & Service, select “Surrender of Passport”