Indian passport

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Indian Passport
भारतीय पासपोर्ट
Indian Passport cover 2015.jpg
The front cover of a contemporary Indian passport.
Date first issued 1920 (first version)
1986 (current version))
Issued by  India
Type of document Passport
Purpose Identification
Eligibility requirements Indian citizenship
Expiration 10 years after acquisition for those aged 18 or more; otherwise 5 years
Cost Note: If the application for a new passport is made under the Tatkal (expedited processing) scheme, the Tatkal fee is to be paid in addition to the regular application fee.[4]
All costs are in INR ().

An Indian passport is a passport issued by the President of India to citizens of the Republic of India for travelling abroad. It enables the bearer to travel internationally and serves as proof of Indian citizenship as per the Passports Act (1967).

The Consular Passport & Visa (CPV) Division of the Ministry of External Affairs, functioning as the central passport organisation, is responsible for issuing Indian passports on demand to all eligible Indian citizens. Passports are issued at 37 locations across India and at 162 Indian diplomatic missions (High Commissions, embassies and consulates) abroad.[5]

In 2014, India issued more than 10 million passports, a number exceeded only by China and the US.[6] Approximately 60 million Indians hold valid passports as of November 2014.[7]

Types of passports[edit]

An Indian Diplomatic Passport and an Official Passport. These passports serve supplementary functions to an ordinary Indian passport. Each passport type has a different colour.
  • Regular passport (navy blue/black cover) is issued to ordinary citizens for ordinary travel, such as for vacation, study and business trips (36 or 60 pages). It is a "Type P" passport, where P stands for personal.
  • Official passport (white cover) is issued to individuals representing the Indian government on official business. It is a "Type S" passport, S standing for service.
  • Diplomatic passport (maroon cover) is issued to Indian diplomats, top ranking government officials and diplomatic couriers. It is a "Type D" passport with D standing for diplomatic.

In addition, selected passport offices in India as well as overseas missions are authorised to issue regular Indo-Bangladesh passports and Indo-Sri Lankan passports to Indian nationals resident in West Bengal, the North-Eastern States, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. These two passports respectively permit travel to Bangladesh and Sri Lanka only and are not valid for travel to other foreign countries.

Physical appearance[edit]

Contemporary ordinary Indian passports have a dark blue or deep bluish-black cover with golden coloured printing. The Emblem of India is emblazoned in the centre of the front cover. The words 'पासपोर्ट' (Hindi) and 'Passport' (English) are inscribed above the Emblem whereas 'भारत गणराज्य' (Hindi) and 'Republic of India' (English) are inscribed below the emblem. The standard passport contains 36 pages, but frequent travellers can opt for a passport containing 60 pages.

Identity Information Page[edit]

Inside of the opening cover of Indian passport, containing identity information.
  • The opening cover end contains the following information:
    • Type ('P'- Stands for "Personal", 'D'- Stands for "Diplomatic", 'S'- Stands for "Service")
    • Country code
    • Passport number
    • Surname
    • Given name(s)
    • Nationality
    • Gender
    • Date of birth
    • Place of birth
    • Place of issue
    • Date of issue
    • Date of expiry
    • Photo of passport holder
    • Signature of the passport holder
    • The information page ends with the Machine Readable Passport Zone (MRZ).
  • The closing end contains the following information:
    • Name of father or legal guardian
    • Name of mother
    • Name of spouse
    • Address
    • Old passport number
    • File number

Passport note[edit]

The passports contain a note from the President of India addressing the authorities of all territories:

The note bearing page is typically stamped and signed by the issuing authority in the name of the President of the Republic of India.


The text of Indian passports is printed in both Hindi and English, two of the 18 official languages of India.

Emigration check[edit]

Holders of ECR passports need a clearance called an Emigration Check from the Government of India's Protector of Emigrants when going to selected countries on a work visa. This is to prevent the exploitation of Indian workers (especially the unskilled and less-educated) when going abroad, particularly to Middle Eastern countries. ECR passport holders travelling on a tourist visa do not need a clearance; this is known as an Emigration Check Suspension.

ECNR status passports are granted to:

  • Indian nationals born abroad;
  • Indian nationals holding at least a matriculation certificate;
  • all holders of diplomatic or official passports.
  • all gazetted government servants;
  • all income-tax payers (including agricultural income-tax payers) in their individual capacity;
  • all graduate and professional degree holders (such as doctors, engineers, chartered accountants, scientists, lawyers, etc.);
  • spouses and dependent children of category of certain holders of ECNR passports;
  • seamen in possession of a CDC;
  • Sea Cadets and Deck Cadets who have:
    • passed their final examination on a three-year B.Sc. Nautical Sciences Course at T.S. Chanakya, Mumbai; and
    • undergone three months' pre-sea training at any of the government-approved training institutes such as T.S. Chanakya, T.S. Rehman, T.S. Jawahar, MTI (SCI), or NIPM, Chennai, after production of identity cards issued by the Shipping Master at Mumbai, Kolkata, or Chennai;
  • persons holding a Permanent Immigration Visa, such as visas issued by the UK, USA, or Australia;
  • persons possessing a two years' diploma from any institute recognized by the National Council for Vocational Training (NCVT) or the State Council of Vocational Training (SCVT), or persons holding a three years’ diploma or equivalent degree from an institution such as a polytechnic recognized by the central or a state government;
  • nurses possessing qualifications recognised under the Indian Nursing Council Act, 1947;
  • all persons above the age of 50 years;
  • all persons who have been staying abroad for more than three years (whether in one continuous period or in aggregate), as well as their spouses;
  • all children up to the age of 18 years.

In accordance with a ruling by the Ministry of External Affairs, passports issued from 2007 onwards do not have the ECNR stamp affixed; instead, a blank page 2 of the passport is deemed to have been ECNR endorsed. As a result, only ECR stamps are now affixed to Indian passports. For passports issued before January 2007, no notation in the passport means ECR. For passports issued in or after January 2007, no notation in the passport means ECNR. If Emigration Check is Required, there will be an endorsement in the passport regarding ECR.


Since 25 November 2015, Indian passports that are handwritten or with an original date of expiry extending to 20 years have not been valid under ICAO rules.[8]

With more recent Indian passports the personal particulars of the passport holder, that were hitherto printed on the inner cover page, are printed on the second page of the document.

Another added security feature in the newer non-handwritten passports is a ghost picture of the holder found on the right side of the second page.

Apart from stymieing criminals from printing fake passports, recent changes also help prevent smudging of the document because of inkjet printers.[9][10]


The price of a standard passport in India:[11]

  • 1500- Fresh or Renew passport (36 pages, standard size) with 10 year validity.
  • 2000 - Fresh or Renew passport (60 pages, 'jumbo' size) with 10 year validity.
  • 3500 - First time applicant or renewal with expedited ('tatkal') service (36 pages) with 10 year validity.
  • 4000 - First time applicant or renewal with expedited ('tatkal') service (60 pages) with 10 year validity.
  • 1000 - Fresh passport for minors (below 18 years of Age) with 5 year validity or till the minor attains the age of 18, whichever is earlier.
  • 3000 - Duplicate passport (36 pages) in lieu of lost, damaged or stolen passport.
  • 3500 - Duplicate passport (60 pages) in lieu of lost, damaged or stolen passport.

Indian passports can also be issued outside India, for which fees varies by country.

New passport issuance system[edit]

In September 2007, the Indian Union cabinet approved a new passport issuance system under the Passport Seva Project. As per the project, front-end activities of passport issuance, dispatch of passports, online linking with police, and Central Printing Unit for centralised printing of passports will be put in place. The new system is trying to be 'timely, transparent, more accessible and reliable manner' for passport issuance. The applicant has to apply for fresh/reissue of passport through the Passport Seva system at one of the 77 Passport Seva Kendras operating throughout the country.

Biometric passport[edit]

India has recently initiated the first phase of biometric e-passport for Diplomatic passport holders in India and abroad. The new passports have been designed locally by the Central Passport Organisation, the India Security Press and IIT Kanpur. It contains a security chip with all personal data and digital images. In the first phase new passports will have a 64KB chip carrying a photograph of the passport holder and in subsequent phases it will have a fingerprint. The new passport has already been tested with passport readers in the United States and has 4-second response time, while the US Passport has 10-second response time. It need not be carried in a metal jacket for security reasons. It will first need to be skimmed through a readers, after which it would generate an access code which then unlocks the chip for reader access.[12]

In India the e-passport is under its first phase of deployment and is restricted to Diplomatic passport holders. On 25 June 2008 the Indian Passport Authority issued the e-passport to the then President of India, Pratibha Patil.[13] As of 2016, the Government has plans to issue e-passports to all of its citizens. Also the Government has authorized Indian Security Press to float a global three-stage tender for procurement of ICAO-compliant electronic contactless inlays along with its operating system, which is required for the manufacture of Bio metric Passports.[14] The necessary procurement have been initiated by India Security Press, Nasik by calling for Global tender for the supply of electronic contactless inlays.[15] The actual transition to the new age passport is expected to commence on the successful completion of the tendering and procurement process.[16]

Visa requirements[edit]

Visa requirements for Indian citizens
  Visa free
  Visa issued upon arrival
  Electronic authorisation or eVisa
  Visa required prior to arrival

Visa requirements for Indian citizens are administrative entry restrictions by the authorities of other states placed on citizens of India. According to the 2017 Passport Index published by Arton Capital, holders of an Indian passport can visit 45 countries and territories visa-free or with visa on arrival, and India is currently ranked 82nd (tied with Laos) globally in terms of travel freedom.[17] According to the 2016 Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index, holders of an Indian passport can visit 52 countries and territories visa-free or with visa on arrival, and India is currently ranked 85th (tied with Mali and Uzbekistan) globally.[18]

Foreign travel statistics[edit]

According to the statistics these are the numbers of Indian visitors to various countries per annum in 2015 (unless otherwise noted):

  1. ^ a b c d e Data for 2014
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x Data for 2016
  3. ^ a b Counting only guests in tourist accommodation establishments.
  4. ^ Data for arrivals by air only.
  5. ^ Data for 2012
  6. ^ a b Data for 2013
  7. ^ a b Data for arrivals by air only.
  8. ^ Total number includes all purposes of visits
  9. ^ Total number includes tourists, business travelers, students, exchange visitors, temporary workers and families, diplomats and other representatives and all other classes of nonimmigrant admissions (I-94).

Gallery of historic images[edit]

See also[edit]


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  6. ^ India ranks third in issuing passports accessed 29 January 2016
  7. ^
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  11. ^ "Indian Passport Fees" (PDF). Government of India. Retrieved 19 December 2012. 
  12. ^ After US tests, India to get first e-passport
  13. ^ "India to introduce biometric passports next year". 5 July 2012. Retrieved 7 October 2012. 
  14. ^ "India to introduce biometric passports to all of it's Citizens.". Ministry of External Affairs, Parliament Q&A -1724. 27 July 2016. 
  15. ^ "Indian Security Press Global Tender for Supply Electronic contactless inlays." (PDF). Indian Security Press- Nashik, Tender No-54/2016-17. 27 July 2016. 
  16. ^ "India looks to Biometric Passports.". Security 28 July 2016. 
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  62. ^ Toerisme in perspectief 2016
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  64. ^ Number of Tourists to Oman
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External links[edit]