Nomological Net

Stray thoughts from here and there. The occasional concern for construct validity. No more logic. Fish.


faults in the clouds of delusion

Wednesday, January 06, 2010


Filling out a visa application form for Singapore. The first section asks for my name, DOB, gender, and marital status.

The following fields appear in the second section:
- Country of Birth
- Race (e.g., Malay, Indian, Chinese, Caucasian, etc.)
- Nationality

The third section asks for my passport details, including Country of Issue.

The fourth section then wants to know my address in my Country of Origin. There are separate fields for:
- Country of Origin
- Division / State / Province of Origin
- Prefecture of Origin
- County / District of Origin, and
- Address.

A subsequent section wants to know if I have resided in countries other than my Country of Origin during the last five years, and if so, to provide all addresses.

I called the consulate to ask what exactly they meant by Country of Origin -- nationality, country of birth, or country of current residence (i.e., original location of application for Singapore visa). Any guesses?



1. The nice lady at the counter took a look at the passport details section which said "Country of Issue: INDIA", "Place of Issue: CHICAGO". She crossed out the INDIA and wrote USA.

2. There was a section that asked me to check a box if I had ever entered Singapore using a different passport or name. Since I was applying to transfer my valid visa from an expired passport to a new one, I checked YES. She took exception to this as well, and told me that "different passport" meant "passport issued by a different country".

3. The entire transaction took just a minute or two. I was asked to return at 4 the same afternoon. I asked if I could enter the waiting area before 4, since I expected that I'd have finished my other errands early. They said yes, and indeed let me in at 3:15. I sat there reading a nice book of old Singapore photos, when someone saw me waiting and so processed my visa early.

4. Singapore claims to not do visas as passport stickers any more. They gave me a one-page computer printout that looked like an e-ticket with a bar code, folded in four, and said that this was my "e-visa" and I better not lose it between now and the time the visa expires. I think this is most inconvenient -- another random piece of paper to carry around.


Blogger Rahul Siddharthan said...

What does "Person of Indian Origin" mean? My guess is "country of origin" means the same thing.

(According to our government, your great-grandfather could have left India a hundred years ago and you, your father and your grandfather may never have set foot in the country since, but you still qualify as a PIO.)

1/06/2010 5:18 PM  
Anonymous Lekhni said...

I didn't know that "Indian" is a race let alone a homogeneous, uniquely identifiable one :)

I wonder if there are there visitor visa quotas based on these "races" ?

1/06/2010 9:52 PM  
Blogger km said...

Lekhni: "Indian" is not a race. It's a motorbike.

1/07/2010 7:05 AM  
Anonymous scout said...

All this just to see me! Muhahahahaha!

Aside: My latest passport was issued in Singapore by the Indian High Commission. Immigration officers in the UK/Europe were very confused - 'Singapore is in India?'

1/08/2010 4:03 PM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

on the other hand, if you are born an indian and take the citizenship of another country, you are disqualified from being a "person of indian origin".

hence the title of the post.

aren't you glad it wasn't issued in delhi, michigan?

1/09/2010 1:39 PM  
Blogger aftab said...

If an Indian gives up his citizenship, he/she can apply for the OCI card (overseas citizenship of India).

If he/she is married to a non-Indian, the spouse can apply for the POI card (Person of Indian Origin).

Some bureaucratic screwed up the names of the two cards.

1/10/2010 8:20 AM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

heh! this is almost as good as baseball, where it's called a strike if you miss and a ball if it isn't a valid ball.

1/18/2010 10:31 AM  

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