To prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Government of India has issued an order prohibiting all inbound international flights to India beginning March 22, 2020. The current ban is set to expire on March 29, 2020, but is subject to change. The prohibition applies to all travelers, regardless of nationality, which means that even Indian citizens will not be permitted to travel to India by air during this time. This order escalates previous travel bans adopted by the Government of India, which placed inbound restrictions on non-citizens only.
Employers may wish to consider the prudence and advisability of international travel at this time. The cancellation of visa appointments, combined with growing travel restrictions around the world, may result in a person traveling abroad being unable to return to the United States for a lengthy period. For any grounded Indian citizens in the United States holding U.S. visas, employers may need to consider alternate visa filing options to avoid potential status violations.
Ogletree Deakins’ Immigration Practice Group will continue to monitor developments with respect to the policy changes and will post updates on the Immigration blog and in the firm’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource Center as additional information becomes available. Critical information for employers is also available via the firm’s webinar programs.