New Delhi, Dec 13: Indian Passports get lotus symbol, more security features! In a move to check the menace of fake passports, the national flower ‘Lotus’ has been imprinted on Indian Passports, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has said. The central government has stated that it would also use other national symbols in a rotational way. People who have recently obtained an Indian Passport, as well as those who want to apply, must take note of the changes that have brought in by the central government.
Indian passports: Here are the top changes
1. Lotus is the national flower and has been imprinted on the passports as part of the enhanced security features to check fake passports, Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said.
2. If we compare the old passports with this highly secured and changed one, we will find that the ‘Lotus’ has replaced the space for the signature of the passport officer. The old passport used to have a space for a passport officer’s signature and seal on the second page. Lotus has been imprinted in the rectangular shape on the second page of the new passport.
3. Old passports used to have separate columns for entering passport holders’ names and addresses. New passports no longer have these separate columns.
4. There are new codes which are being used in the new Indian passports. New passports with special features were first made available at passport offices in Kochi in November.
5. It has been learnt that better quality of paper has been used for new Indian passports along with improved printing technology. The printing process has been done in Maharashtra’s Nashik.
6. National Informatics Centre (NIC), and the Indian Security Press (Nasik) have worked in tandem with MEA to upgrade passport for travellers.
United Nations specialized agency International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has given its approval for the new features. The MEA has also revealed that a plethora of changes will come pertaining to passports from time to time.
The MEA is also working on e-passports with an aim to prepare a new passport booklet with modern security features. The E-passport is basically a biometric-based passport. This will include a chip and can be used at automated ePassport gates.