Recently, an issue regarding Indian passports being submitted for Visa requirements for travelling to Germany has come to light. It seems that Germany is refusing to accept Indian passports because of the passport number being perforated/punched through on all the pages (from the first page to the last).
When alerted to the issue, OpIndia spoke to ‘Corporate Traveler, the SME arm of FCM Travel Solutions, the Indian subsidiary of Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG), Australia’, a global travel agency to get a sense of the issue and they too have confirmed that the visa process is being held up as the new Indian passports were not being accepted.
They confirmed that recently (2018) passport office has started printing passports wherein top of all the pages are perforated/punched-through with the passport number, whereas till last year it was punched only for second half of the passport. This new passport format seems to be creating the problem.
The passports which are being accepted currently are these :
While the VFS Mumbai website hasn’t been updated with this information alerting visa applicants, the travel agency we spoke to says that the issue is a pan India issue and they themselves faced issues in Pune as well.
Some have even raised this concern on Social Media and tagged External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.
@SushmaSwaraj .. German consulate in Bangalore is not accepting new Indian passport for visa application. My family is waiting to join me in Germany. Please help.
Indian Passports which have the Passport Number perforated on every page will NOT be accepted
— Chandrahas Kandlur (@ckandlur1109) February 22, 2018
The notice has been updated on the VFS website for Karnataka. While some websites haven’t updated the notice yet, the issue being faced is not limited to Karnataka or Bangalore.
This seems to be an issue that affects every Indian who has been issued a passport in 2018. While passports issued prior to 2018 have faced no issues, this will have to be addressed by the Ministry as soon as possible.
We tried to get in touch with the passport division of the Ministry but couldn’t get a clarification since nobody answered the phone. We will update this article with relevant information.
Update: The issue has been resolved.