India Union Budget 2022: 'Futuristic' e-passports announced for citizens

The passport jacket will contain an electronic chip, featuring important security-related data encoded on it.



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By Our Reporter

Published: Tue 1 Feb 2022, 11:36 AM

Last updated: Tue 1 Feb 2022, 10:43 PM

India plans to roll out chip-based e-passports with futuristic technology in 2022-23, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, announced in her budget speech on Tuesday.

The passport jacket will contain an electronic chip, featuring important security-related data encoded on it. The move will boost convenience for citizens, declared Sitharaman.

India issues passports in the form of printed booklets at present. S. Jaishankar, the external affairs minister, had earlier said that discussions were on with the India Security Press about issuing chip-enabled e-passports.

“We propose to pursue the manufacture of e-passports on priority so that a new passport booklet with advanced security features can be rolled out in the near future," he had said.

Personal details of the applicant would be digitally signed and stored in the chip, which would be embedded in the passport booklet. In case of tampering, the system will be able to identify it.

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India’s e-passports would be in accordance with the standards of the International Civil Aviation Organisation. Currently, e-passports are available in the US, the UK, Germany and some other countries.

The microchip in the passport would include details such as the passport holder's name and date of birth. It could be scanned in minutes, reducing the time spent in physical verification at immigration counters. According to government sources, it will also curb the fake passport rackets as the data on the microchip will not be accessible to others.


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