Body repatriation to India

Body repatriation to India

A citizen of the Republic of India died in Russia - what to do?

1. Notify the insurance company the deceased was a client of

According to the Russian Federation migration legislation*, a medical insurance policy is required for obtaining a Russian visa. Without it, the stay of a foreign citizen on the Russian territory is considered illegal and entails administrative liability** resulting in a penalty fine of 5 to 7 thousand rubles, or expulsion from the country in some cases. This also applies in case of an e-visa issued by a foreign citizen to visit the Far Eastern Federal District, St. Petersburg, Leningrad as well as Kaliningrad regions.

This document, however, is not just another bureaucratic formality – but, rather than that, an essential tool for retrieving those who had suffered a fatal accident or died far from their homes. The insurance policy will cover the basic set of medical services: emergency medical care, the cost of treating sudden illnesses or accidents, as well as repatriation of the remains to the homeland. Thus, the insurance will protect travelers and their families from unforeseen medical expenses abroad and will be vital in the posthumous repatriation of the deceased. In case of an insurance event, one shall immediately contact the service company by the phone number stamped on the medical insurance policy.

Attention! Usually, the insurance company will not recognize death as an insurance event in the following cases:

  • The insured person died as a result of injuries sustained while doing sports (and especially – in case this was not part of the contract);
  • sports (and especially – in case this was not part of the contract); The deceased was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the moment;
  • The death occurred during the client committing a felony or as a result of suicide;

* Federal Law No. 114-F3 "On the procedure of leaving the Russian Federation and entering the Russian Federation" dated 15.08.1996, RF Government resolution No. 1488 "On medical insurance of foreign citizens temporarily staying in the Russian Federation" dated 11.12.1998.

** Code of the Russian Federation on Administrative Offenses No. 195-FZ of 20.12.2001, article 18.8.

2. Contact the Indian Embassy

The Consular Section of the Embassy of the Republic of India can provide significant support to families facing the death of a loved one abroad. Consulate staff will be ready to provide detailed advice on all issues related to the posthumous repatriation of the remains. They will also help in obtaining the necessary documents, as well as contacting the insurance company on behalf of a legal representative. They can also provide contacts of qualified funeral agencies. The Indian consulate will also take over the interaction with the local officials to speed up the process of transportation of the deceased. Throughout the entire process, consular officers will maintain constant contact with the relatives of the deceased – or a person interested in his return to the homeland.

In case when direct relatives of the deceased are unable to pay the costs associated with posthumous repatriation, the Consulate of India will be ready to take over the payment for transportation of the remains.

3. Seek the help of a local funeral service

Posthumous repatriation is a complex and lengthy process that can take many weeks or even months. Although it is possible to organize the transportation of the body or ashes on your own, even with the assistance of the insurance company and the embassy, ​​collecting the necessary package of documents and solving organizational issues will require relatives to know the procedural intricacies of this procedure and overcome exhausting bureaucratic red tape.

The Consulate of the Republic of India advises those who seek the help of a qualified funeral service, whose specialists will be familiar with funeral laws of both countries and thus will be able to collect all the required documents in the shortest possible time and organize the body or remains transportation in the most convenient way for their clients.

4. Choose the method of transportation

Despite the comparatively high cost of air travel, the plane is the fastest and most convenient means of transport for bringing the deceased back home over long distances. It is worth noting the fact that, according to international aviation rules, an airline carrier sets tariffs and its own specific rules for the transportation of the remains. Therefore, when organizing posthumous transportation, it is necessary to contact air carrier office for details.

How much does the posthumous repatriation of an Indian citizen cost?

The approximate cost of posthumous repatriation to the Republic of India is estimated to be around 8 000 USD (about 600 000 rubles). Exact costs depend on many factors, including:

  • The distance between the place of death, the Consulate of India in Russia, as well as the airports of departure and arrival of the cargo;
  • The transportation method (coffin or urn);
  • The weight of the remains.

When calculating the costs of the repatriation procedure, one must also take paperwork and body preparation (embalming/cremation, purchasing, and sealing off a special coffin/urn.) into account.

Documents required for human remains transportation

To transport a deceased citizen of India back home, one should collect all the necessary documents. Please note that they must be in English or Hindi and the translation must be notarized. Necessary documents include:

  • A copy of the passport of the deceased, as well as an identity document of the applicant. In case of their loss, one must immediately contact the Indian Embassy;
  • Medical certificate of death in form No. 106 / u-08. It is issued at the medical institution where the deceased was treated, or in the morgue;
  • A notarized copy of the official police report on the investigation into the circumstances of the death of the deceased (if the death occurred as a result of external causes);
  • Written consent of the next of kin for the transportation of the deceased's remains, also certified by a notary;
  • Permission from the Consulate of the Republic of India to import mortal remains into the country. Obtainable from the Consular Section of the Indian Embassy in Moscow;
  • Permission to export/import body/ashes from the Russian Federation. To obtain it, you must contact Rospotrebnadzor;
  • Certificates of cargo compliance with the rules for transporting mortal remains across the border: certificate of embalming, certificate of airtight sealing of the coffin, and non-insertion of foreign objects, as well as the certificate of the absence of infectious diseases (in case of transportation of the remains in the coffin). As a rule, it is issued to the person responsible for organizing the transportation by the employees of the morgue or funeral agency;

Rules for transporting remains across the border

If transported in a coffin, remains must be placed in a hermetically sealed zinc container. It is allowed to use coffins with a zinc insert for transportation. To protect the cargo from mechanical damage or sealing breaches, it is required to pack it in a special shipping box.

In the case of transportation of cremated remains, the walls of the urn must be x-rayed so that the customs officers can make sure that there are no foreign objects. The urn should be sealed and packed in a wooden box, padded with a soft cloth from the inside.

Useful links:

1. Gosuslugi (Public services)


2. Rospotrebnadzor

Address: Vadkovsky lane, house 18, buildings 5 ​​and 7, Moscow, 127994

Phone: +7 (499) 973-26-90


3. Embassy of India (Moscow)

Address: Vorontsovo Pole street, 6-8

Address (consular section): Vorontsovo Pole street, 4

Phone: (7495) -783-7535;

Telephone (emergency assistance COVID-19): + 7-965-277-34-14;

E-Mail (consular issues):


4. Consulate General of India in St. Petersburg

Address: Ryleev street, 35

Phone: (7-812) - 2721988



5. Consulate General of India (Vladivostok)

Address: Verkhneportovaya street, 46

Phone: 007-4232-413920



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