Union Budget 2022: FM Announces E-Passports to be Rolled Out

During her budget speech on Tuesday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the issuance of electronic chip embedded e-passports in 2022-2023. These e-Passports will enhance convenience for citizens through an electronic chip and futuristic technology with necessary security details encoded in them.

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As of now, India issues its passports in the form of printed booklets. Recently, Minister of External Affairs S Jaishankar had mentioned discussions regarding the chip-enabled passports project with the India Security Press. The manufacture of e-Passports is to be pursued on priority so that the new e-Passport with advanced and improved security features can be made available to the citizens in the near future.

The chip will contain the personal details of the passport holders and will be embedded in their passport booklet. The system will be able to identify in case the chip has been tampered with or manipulated. In case of tampering, the passport will not be authenticated.

The contract for procuring ICAO-compliant electronic contactless inlays as well as its operating system has been awarded by the India Security Press, both extremely crucial for manufacturing the chip-enabled e-passports. Upon successful completion of this process, the issuance of e-passports will commence.

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