Cover color of passports of migrant workers made Congress chief Rahul Gandhi see red! The government’s plan announcing orange as the cover color of passports of workers wishing to migrate was labeled as discriminatory by Rahul Gandhi. He felt that this action amounted to considering Indian migrating workers as second-class citizens and found it objectionable. He stated that it exposed the discriminatory mind-set of the BJP government and expressed this opinion on Twitter this morning.
Presently, all passports in the country have blue covers with the exclusion of official and diplomatic passports. In any case, other nations swing between blue, black, red and green for the passport cover colors with the colors differing for their diplomats.
The decision came from the foreign ministry’s office in the last week. The foreign ministry also disclosed its intention of eliminating the end page of the passport containing information on the passport holder’s emigration status and address. In the absence of the end page of the passport it was felt necessary to introduce passports with the orange colored passport jackets for the ECS status passport holders. However, the blue color would be retained for the remaining lot with non-ECR status. This information was disclosed by Raveesh Kumar, the spokesperson from the foreign ministry, on Friday.
The date for issue of new passports has not yet been declared by the foreign ministry. The current passports will be substituted for the new ones after the expiry of their validity. The applicants under the ‘Emigration Check Required’ or ECS category include those who have yet to finish their schooling and are moving abroad to a set of 18 countries, mostly in the Gulf for purposes of work. It is mandatory for them to obtain a certificate of ‘Emigration Clearance’ from the Office of Protector of Emigrants before they depart from the country.