Introduction to passport Act and Impounding a passport

Introduction to passport Act and Impounding a passport

This article is written by SONAL PRIYA, a 2nd-year law student at Lovely Professional University. An official document which is being issued by a government, it holds the holder’s identity and citizenship and gives them the right to travel under its protection to and coming from foreign countries. The Indian Passport Act came into force to regulate the free movement of citizens going out of this country. Article 19 of the Constitution It is mentioned the right to free movement as a  fundamental right, and restricting it is considered a  violation of Article 14 of the Constitution. The Passports Act was created to regulate by not allowing those who may hamper the sovereignty and integrity of the country.

Though the entire procedure for making an Indian passport is computerized and the formalities are online now by the ministry of foreign affairs of India. Then also people are facing lots of issues and delays in making their fresh and valid passports. The main problem with the delay in issuing a fresh passport is due to lots of applications which is for police verification at concerned police stations. People prefer local consultants and agencies for making their new Indian passport which can be done easily by them without paying any extra charges.

What is Passport

An Indian passport is a passport which is issued by an order of the President of India to Indian citizens for the purpose of international travel. It enables the holder to travel internationally and serves as proof of Indian citizenship as per the Passports Act, of 1967. In India, passports are being issued by the Passport Seva Kendra.

Passport seva Kendra It is the online portal of the Passport Office where after filling up all the relevant details; the user is then directed to visit his nearest Regional Passport Office to complete the rest of the documents. Indian passports are being issued at 93 passport offices which are located across India and at 162 Indian diplomatic missions which is abroad. The Passport Act, of 1967  was enacted and came into existence on 5th May 1967 by the parliament of India for dealing with the issuance of passports and other travel documents.

Importance of passport

  • If anyone is planning to visit any foreign country which is outside India then in that case they need a valid passport for legal procedures.
  • It is the main travel document to travel outside India.
  • A visa is a kind of stamp in the passport booklet to stay in a foreign country for a  particular period of time.
  • A passport is considered to be the identification of the citizenship of the passport holder.
  • It can also be used as a residence or identity proof.

Eligibility For Making an Indian Passport

Any Indian Citizen is eligible for making a passport with no age limits. If the guardian has a valid Indian passport then Child’s passport can be made on a legal self-affidavit.

  • Proof of address with any one of them attach with them Like ration card, telephone bill, electricity bill etc.
  • Proof of date of birth with any one of them attach with them like a Birth certificate issued by municipal Authority, a date of birth certificate from the school last attended by the applicant.
  • Citizenship Document if the applicant is a citizen of India by Registration or Naturalization.
  • The Government/Public Sector/Statutory body employees should submit an original “Identity Certificate”.

Classification of passport as per colour

Under section 4(1) of the Indian passport Act,1967 passports are classified into three categories based on their colour:-

  • DARK BLUE:- regular and urgent passports are both for Indian ordinary citizens.
  • WHITE:- These are issued for people who are going to a foreign country for any task or work offered by the government of India.
  • MARRON:- These are issued for Indian diplomats and senior government officers of India.

Impounding a Passport

  • Section 10(3) talks about the conditions during which a passport is impounded:-
  • Section 10(3)(a)  talks about that if the passport authority is satisfied that the passport holder or travel document is in wrongful possession.
  • Section 10(3)(b) talks about when it is obtained through fraud or misrepresentation.
  • Section 10(3)( c) talks about if the Passport Office deems it necessary, for preserving friendly relations with other nation-states.
  • Section 10(3)(d) talks about when a holder of a passport has been convicted of a crime carrying imprisonment over 2 years.
  • Section 10(3)( e) talks about when there is an ongoing criminal proceeding against the passport holder.
  • Section 10(3)( f) talks about if any conditions of the issue of a passport have been contravened.
  • Section 10 (3)( g) talks about the failure of complying with notices served under sub-section (1).
  • Section 10 (3) ( h) talks about when it is brought to the notice of the Passport office that a warrant for arrest or an issue of summons has been made against the passport holder.

CASE LAWS ON REJECTION OF PASSPORT

  • SWAPNA SIJU Vs UNION OF INDIA( 21 St Dec ,2009)

In this case, the High Court of Kerala at Ernakulam talked about the rejection of a passport for renewal where the petitioner had once given wrong information on her Date of Birth.

  • ASHUTOSH AMRIT PATNAIK Vs STATE OF ORISSA AND ORS( 23rd Dec 2022)

The Orissa High Court has held that only the pendency of criminal cases cannot be the sole ground to deny renewal of the passport of a person.

Conclusion

The passport is an essential document for the individual because it is the only form of identification which is accepted. As mentioned in my blog, the document holds the holder’s identity and citizenship. A passport is a formal document which is issued by an authorized official of a country to its citizens that is necessary to go to another country and come back into the country. It allows the citizen to travel to a foreign country according to visa requirements. When you want to travel outside India the first piece of paper you are going to need is a passport. It is the document that establishes your identity as an Indian citizen and has all the visas stamped in it. Not only it is a travel document, but it can also even be used as proof of identity or address.

Suggestions

The suggestion is to improve the process of passport-making.

  • The online application form needs in it a lot of improvements.  It includes a huge amount of technical language which should be changed.
  • There should be more transparency in the system as people found some sort of corruption in passport offices.
  • The interview round in the passport office should be short, easy and transparent. There should be less time consumption. Sometimes few people get nervous in this round and give wrong information to officers.

References

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