India: NRIs, OCIs do not need prior nod to buy immovable property, Reserve Bank says

Only agricultural land, farm house and plantation property do not come under ruling


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Published: Wed 29 Dec 2021, 9:02 PM

Last updated: Thu 30 Dec 2021, 7:18 AM

Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and Overseas Citizen of India (OCIs) will no longer need prior approval of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to buy or sell immovable property like houses in India, other than agricultural land, farm house and plantation property, the central bank said on Wednesday.

The clarification has been issued by RBI after received a large number of queries with regard to acquisition of immovable properties by OCIs in the wake of a Supreme Court judgement relating to Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA).

“At present, NRIs/OCIs are governed by provisions of FEMA 1999 and do not require prior approval of RBI for acquisition and transfer of immovable property in India, other than agricultural land/ farm house/ plantation property, as per the terms and conditions laid down in Chapter IX of the Foreign Exchange Management (Non-debt Instruments) Rules, 2019, dated October 17, 2019 (as amended from time to time), issued under Section 46 of FEMA 1999,” the RBI said in a statement.


The RBI issued a clarification on acquisition/transfer of immovable property in India by Overseas Citizen of India (OCIs).

“A large number of queries have been received at various Offices of the Reserve Bank, based on newspaper reports on a Supreme Court Judgement, on whether prior approval of RBI is required for acquisition/transfer of immovable property in India by as Overseas Citizen of India OCIs,” the central bank said.

“It is hereby clarified that the concerned Supreme Court Judgement dated February 26, 2021 in Civil Appeal 9546 of 2010 was related to provisions of FERA, 1973, which has been repealed under Section 49 of FEMA, 1999,” the RBI added. (ANI)

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