India to introduce e passport in Near Future

India to introduce e passport in Near Future

India will soon start issuing e-passports that use Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) and biometrics. Sanjay Bhattacharya, Secretary of Ministry of External Affairs Secretary, has stated that the new e-passport will secure biometric data and be in line with the International Civil Aviation Organisation(ICAO).

The passport cover will contain an electronic chip with important security-related data encoded.

Presently India issues printed booklets passports for its citizens.

Prior, S Jaishankar, Minister of External Affairs, said the ministry had initiated discussions with the 'India Security Press' regarding issuing chip-enabled e-passports to the people of India.

The minister said.

"We propose to follow the manufacture of e-passports on priority so that a new passport booklet with advanced sefety features can be rolled out in the near future,"

India to introduce e passport in Near Future 1unsplash image

Read More: Indian passport becomes 83rd most potent in Global ranking 2022

Advanced security features

The External Affairs Ministry will issue chip-enabled e-Passports with advanced security features to citizens. The applicants' particulars would be digitally signed and stored in the chip embedded in the passport booklet. If anyone tries to tampers with the chip, the system shall identify it, failing the passport authentication.

Intending to manufacture e-Passports, India Security Press, Nashik has awarded the contract for procurement of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)-compliant electronic contactless inlays along with its operating system necessary for chip-enabled e-Passports. Issuance of e-Passports will commence on the successful completion of the procurement process by ISP Nashik.

A senior company official said. TCS will also start the much-awaited e-passport,

Tej Bhatla, business unit head for the public sector at TCS, told PTI.

"We will bring the technology for e-passport, but you know the sovereign functions like granting or printing of the passport booklet will continue with the government,"

He explained that it would not be an utterly paper-free document as work like visa stamping will continue but will reduce the need for paper through automation wherever possible.