Lotus on Passport: MEA asserts the measure as the security feature!

In the twixt of the controversy over printing the 'Lotus' on the new passports, the Central government has, on Thursday, asserted that the measure has been taken to enhance the security features to identify the fake passports. The government has tabled the clarification exactly a day after the opposition MPs of Lok Sabha demanded the ratification from the government on printing the Lotus symbols on the new passports.

     The passport of the Republic of India - File photo


While addressing the reporters, the official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs Raveesh Kumar has rationalized the measure and stated that the Lotus is the national flower of India and it has been printed in the passports with the view of upgrading the security features meant to locate the fake passports. By citing that these security features have been introduced as a part of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) guidelines, he asserted that the other national symbols would also be used on a rotation basis to serve the same purpose.

Raveesh Kumar, the official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs - File Photo


He added that apart from Lotus, the other national symbols will be printed on the passports and right now it is lotus and this would be replaced in next month with some other symbols which are connected with India such as a national flower or national animal.

M K Raghavan of Congress party and sitting MP of Kozhikode constituency, Kerala had raised the issue during the Zero hour in the Lok Sabha during which he quoted the distribution of new passports with Lotus symbol in Kozhikode and he accused the Central government on its move of saffronizing the government establishments with the 'Lotus', that is the party symbol of the BJP.

                The new passport with the Lotus symbol


Earlier in June this year, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had announced that the Central government will propose the advanced security features in the passports and the reports say that with the view of enhancing the safety and security features, the Lotus has been printed on the page that was previously reserved for the seal and signature of the passport officer. The new passports with Lotus symbols were firstly distributed in Kochi last month.