Australian Consulate-General
Chennai, India

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR AUSTRALIANS

IMPORTANT UPDATES FOR THOSE WISHING TO RETURN TO AUSTRALIA 

In an Australian National Cabinet meeting on 10 July, the Prime Minister and State and Territory leaders discussed increased COVID-19 cases in Victoria. As part of the response, the leaders agreed to reduce by half the number of arrivals on inbound flights into Australia.

We know these changes taken by Australian Federal, State and Territory governments to manage COVID-19 risks are frustrating for many of you who want to return to Australia. We will continue to update registered Australians about options to return to Australia as they become available.

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR AUSTRALIANS

The Indian Government has announced new guidelines as part of “Unlock v14.0”. A number of activities will be allowed from 1 September outside of containment zones. Please ensure you are aware of any State specific regulations and adhere to these.

The Indian government and states governments are maintaining, however, a number of measures in the fight against COVID-19. Australians should follow the advice of local authorities and minimise your risk of getting the virus.

High Commission staff will continue to update our website with relevant information as quickly as possible, including links to the latest available information and advice.

We can all help slow the spread of COVID-19. To protect yourself and others you must:

·      practise good hygiene 

·      practise social distancing

·      limit contact with other people

·      understand how to isolate if you need to

·      look after your mental health

If you need urgent consular assistance (for example you have been attacked, arrested) please call +91 11 4139 9900.

REGISTER WITH US FOR UPDATES
If you have not yet done so, we urge you to register with the Australian High Commission – this will enable us to contact you should the need arise including advising when flights to return to Australia are available.
Click on this link to register with us:
 https://covid19.dfat.gov.au  

 

LOANS

The Australian Government will provide additional support to the most vulnerable Australian citizens whose return to Australia has been impacted by the restrictions arising from COVID-19. Full details about the assistance, including eligibilty criteria and how to apply, are available at https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/COVID-19/covid-19-overseas-financial-assistance 

 

HOTELS

If you have any problems with hotels, including hotels accepting bookings, please contact the 24/7 Indian Government tourism hotline on 1800 11 1363 (available in 12 languages).

 

VISAS

If your regular visa or e-visa or stay stipulation period are expiring post 30 June, such regular visa or e-visa or stay stipulation period shall be deemed to be valid until 30 more days from the date of resumption of normal international flight operations on ‘GRATIS’ basis without levy of overstay penalty. (Vide MHA O.M. No. 25022/24/2020-F.V/F.I(Pt.) dated 29.06.2020To extend your visa apply online through FRRO/FRO.

 

EXTENSION OF INDIA'S FLIGHT BAN

India has extended its ban on regular scheduled international passenger flights till 30 September.However, international all-cargo operations and flights specifically allowed to operate by the Indian aviation regulator, such as repatriation flights, charter flights, and flights under the Vande Bharat Mission, will continue to operate. We have prepared responses to frequently asked questions, including covering existing flight bookings, charter options, visa extensions and tips for the lockdown in India. Read more...

 

ATTENTION: Be careful when choosing charter fights    

Many people are asking us about other private charter options being promoted. Be aware: only flights we notify to those registered with us have the approvals required to operate. Please be cautious about other options.

 

RETURING TO AUSTRALIA

The Indian Government's ban on international scheduled flights has been extended until further notice. India resumed domestic flights in a calibrated manned from 25 May.

On 25 March, the Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack and the Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne issued a statement about Australians trying to return to Australia.

They made clear:

-        Where local authorities will allow, consideration is being given, on a case by case basis, to supporting airlines willing to operate non-scheduled services to bring Australians home

-        There are no plans for assisted departures such as those conducted to the epicentre of the COVID-19, Wuhan in China and Japan.

We are sending updates on flight options to Australians who have registered with us (see above on how to do so). We will update this website when there is any change in this advice or if new airline information becomes available.

The Australian government continues to investigate commercial flights options to repatriate those wanting to return to Australia. The planning and coordination of these flights will affect consideration of privately-organised charter flights. 

If you have sought approval for a privately-organised charter, you can expect to be contacted by the Australian Border Force. The AHC New Delhi is unable to provide any assistance for private charter flights until such approvals have been provided in Australia.

We continue to assess all such requests against a range of factors, including the need to manage and sequence the return of Australians into our international airports so that Commonwealth, State and Territory authorities can successfully implement reception arrangements, including mandatory quarantine requirements.

Movement Passes

If you have purchased a ticket on a flight to Australia a movement pass from the Indian government to travel to the city from where your flight is departing is no longer required. However, you should contact and consult the state governments you need to pass through to confirm what if any requirements they may have and comply with these.

Quarantine period

All travellers returning to Australia will be required to undertake a mandatory 14 day quarantine at designated facilities at their port of entry. You will be directed to a facility such as a hotel on arrival in Australia and required to stay there for 14 days before you can complete any onward travel or return to your home. The accommodation, along with food, water and any medical support will be provided by the Australian Government. See the Smartraveller website for more.

Should you then wish to travel to another state or territory governments you may be subject to an additional period of quarantine or other restrictions. You should keep up with the latest with the relevant State and Territory Governments:

Australian Capital Territory (ACT)

New South Wales

Northern Territory

Queensland  

South Australia

Tasmania

Victoria

Western Australia  

 

 

FOOD AND MEDICINE

As you know, the Indian Government has announced further relaxaions to restrictions on activities outside of containment zones. Indian authorities advise that people will have access to food and medicine in containment zones. 

For those staying in hotels, you should be able to drive or walk to nearby shops and pharmacies. If you are having problems, we suggest asking your hotel, local authorities or friends to help you get essential supplies.

If you have any problems. Contact us: (Business hours: +91 11 4139 9900, [email protected]; For outside of business hours: +612 6261 3305).

You can also call the Police on 100.

 

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS IN AUSTRALIA 

The Australian Government recognises that COVID-19 is affecting international students in Australia, who are friends, colleagues, classmates and members of the Australian community. On 4 April, the Australian Minister for Education, the Hon Dan Tehan MP, said the Australian Government had agreed that:

  • international students who had been in Australia for longer than 12 months who find themselves in financial hardship would be able to access their Australian superannuation
  • international students would be able to work up to 40 hours per fortnight
  • the Government would increase flexibility for a number of regulations to make it easier for international students to continue their studies in Australia should they wish to do so
  • the Government would be flexible in cases where COVID-19 has prevent international students from meeting their visa conditions (such as not being able to attend classes).   

International Students in Australia Factsheet

See also the Australian government's portal on support available for international students in Australia during COVID-19.

 

OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION

  • The Australian Government advises all Australians: Do not travel overseas at this time. This is the highest advice level. Please see the Smartraveller website for more information on COVID-19 for Australian travellers.
  •  On 24 March 2020, Prime Minister Morrison announced a ban on Australians travelling overseas under the Biosecurity Act 2015. This is on top of the Australian Government’s standing advice to Australians not to travel overseas. It is effective from midday on 25 March 2020.
  • The Australian Government has announced that from 21:00hrs on 20 March 2020 only Australian citizens, residents and immediate family members can travel to Australia. Please visit the Visas and Citizenship section for more information.
  • Indian Government Ministry of Health and Family Welfare: https://www.mohfw.gov.in/   
  • Indian Ministry of Tourism website to help forieign tourists in India: http://strandedinindia.com/ 
  • Social distancing: Australian Government adviceIndian Government advice 
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) What you need to Know Factsheet  

 

CONTACTS

                 

 

 

 

Welcome to the Australian Consulate-General in Chennai

This office is responsible for Australia’s Interests in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and the Union Territories of Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Puducherry.

This website provides information on the various services of the Australian Consulate-General in Chennai. For more regular updates of our activites visit us on Twitter and Facebook.

Latest News

Australian Alumni Grants Scheme: Round 1 2020 winners announced

In February 2020, Australian diplomatic missions in India opened the inaugural round of the Australian Alumni Grant Scheme (AAGS) to provide seed funding to support alumni-led initiatives that create impact across the 10 sectors of the India Economic Strategy. The projects are intended to strengthen ties between both nations, support alumni in their professional endeavours and improve ‘Australia literacy’ in India.

The first winners of funding under the AAGS have been announced.  Read more about them here.

Important changes to Smartraveller

Smartraveller has the latest, authoritative travel advice so you can be informed and prepared about overseas travel. Subscribe to receive travel advice updates - by simply supplying your name and email address – straight to your inbox.

You can now also subscribe to the new SMS service - by supplying your mobile number – to receive critical alerts in the event of a crisis overseas.

In a crisis, Smartraveller will activate a crisis page on its website. It will make it easier for you or someone you know to contact the Australian Government if you need help. It will supplement the consular emergency hotline.

Visit www.smartraveller.gov.au to subscribe or connect with Smartraveller on Facebook and Twitter.

India Economic Strategy

The strategy, led by former DFAT Secretary and High Commissioner to India, Peter Varghese, is an ambitious plan to grow the economic partnership between India and Australia out to 2035.

Full report is available at  indiaeconomicstrategy.dfat.gov.au

Media release: India Economic Strategy

Watch the video link on Capturing India’s economic transformation                           

Opening Hours

The Consulate is open from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm Monday through Friday, excluding public holidays.

Passport interviews will be held at the Consulate between 9.30 am and 4.30 pm Monday to Friday by appointment only. To book an appointment please call +91 44 4592 1300.

Public Holidays - 2020

  DAY DATE HOLIDAY

1

Wednesday                   

01 January    

New Year’s Day

2

Wednesday                     

15 January

Pongal

3

Monday                       

27 January

In lieu of Australia Day/Republic Day

4

Friday                            

10 April

Good Friday

5

Monday                    

13 April

Easter Monday

6

Friday

01 May

May Day

7

Monday                 

25 May

Ramadan (Eid-ul-Fitr)

8

Monday

08 June

Queen’s birthday

9

Tuesday

11 August

Janmashtami

10

Friday                             

02 October

Gandhi Jayanthi

11

Friday         

13 November   

Diwali

12

Friday

25 December

Christmas Day

13

Monday

28 December

In lieu of Boxing Day

14

Tuesday                

29 December

Additional DFAT holiday

 

Emergency Contact for Australians

For Australians in distress, please call the Australian Consulate-General consular section on +91 44 4592 1300. If it is outside of business hours or if you are having difficulty getting through to the Consulate-General, contact the Consular Emergency Centre (CEC) in Canberra directly on +61 2 6261 3305 or by SMS on +61 421 269 080. The CEC may also assist concerned family members in Australia and can be contacted on 1300 555 135 (within Australia).

Contact Information

9th Floor, Express Chambers, Express Avenue
49, 50L Whites Road, Royapettah
Chennai 600 014

Tel: +91 44 4592 1300
Fax: +91 44 4592 1320

Email: (General Queries) [email protected]

If you would like to be informed of any upcoming events and initiatives organised by the Australian Consulate-General kindly send us an email to the email address mentioned above with your contact details.

The Australian Consulate-General in Chennai does not provide any assistance with regards to Australian visas or Australian citizenship applications which are processed in New Delhi by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.