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The Government Begins E-Passport Service In Nepal

Finally, the government has begun e-passport service in Nepal. Find out why it is a perfect improvement over the existing MRPs.

Nepal’s government has begun its much-anticipated e-passport service from today (17 November 2021). At an event at the Department of Passport’s Assembly Hall, the government officially began the e-passport service by issuing the first digital passport to the centenarian scholar Satya Mohan Joshi.

The third-generation e-passport is approved by ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization). While the service went officially live from today, the government already opened its online booking from Wednesday (November 16, 2021).

Hon. Foreign Minister Dr. Narayan Khadka issued Nepal’s first-ever e-passport to the revered culture expert Joshi.

After the highly acclaimed launch of the Nagarik App, e-passport is perhaps the Nepal government’s next popular digital reinforcement. The government has almost set up all the necessary infrastructure to issue e-Passport in Nepal. This type of e-passport would bring convenience to Nepalese from having to stay in a long queue for verification.

The government is experimenting with the issuance of E-passport in Nepal. The service will go fully operational since the beginning of the next year, likely from January 2022.

E-passport in Nepal To Displace MRPs

The government had been preparing for the third-gen passport service for months and has begun its beta phase. When the service goes for mass distribution from next year, it will replace the existing MRPs (Machine Readable Passports) in Nepal. Talking about e-passport in Nepal, Rajendra Pandey, the director of the Passport Department told that “e-Passport would displace the existing MRPs altogether and render passports more reliable with dual ID verification; electronic chip and biometric data consisting of fingerprints of a citizen.”

The government has reached an agreement with the French company IDEMIA Identity and Security France SAS. The agency has printed 2 million copies of e-passports at the expense of around NRs. 3 Billion. The government will issue those 2 million copies in its first phase.

After obtaining the e-Passport Nepalese travelers would receive international standards of services. Many airports in the world have electronic ID verification setups. Those would verify the identity of the travelers by just scanning the face of the e-Passport holders.

Currently, those carrying an MRP passport would have to wait in a queue to get them verified manually at the counters that take minutes. As mentioned already, an e-Passport verification will complete in a few minutes and it will be time-saving for everyone involved at the counters too.

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How To Apply for An E-Passport In Nepal?

e-passport in Nepal
E-passport online form
  • First visit this link YThis is your Pre-enrollment for an e-Passport
  • Click on Apply for Passport
  • Select First Issuance
  • Read the information and below you will have to choose between either Ordinary passport of 34 or 66 pages and click on Proceed. You can also apply for other types of passport here. Click on Proceed.
  • Now, click on I Agree
  • Fill up the form with all your detail and click on next (The fields with * are mandatory).
  • Fill up more detail such as citizenship, contact and other and click Next.
  • In the second tab, you will need to upload a document such as your citizenship’s back and front, marriage certificate, or divorce certificate etc. [Your file size shouldn’t exceed 400 kb]
  • In the third step, you will select your place to Book Your Appointment including the date. It should be nearest to your region of stay. Click Next.
  • Save your detail.
  • You will see a sequence of a passcode as your request number. Save to your clipboard and click on Finish. This will take you to the payment.
  • Now you will have to paste the code in the box under Reference ID and input your Date of Birth. Then check I accept the Terms and Conditions and click on Get Details.
  • It will make you wait for around 15 minutes to verify your data.
  • When this completes, the passport department authenticates your application and you may visit the office you choose on your preferred date to receive your e-passport.

This is how you apply for an e-passport in Nepal. The service has just begun and due to the overload with application requests, an internal server error is causing an issue. The depart seems to have resolved the issue though.

Spokesperson of the department Sharad Raj Arun said, “The problem has been resolved at present. But we have implemented a quota system to control the pressure,” he said.

 If it persists for you, we suggest you refresh the site until it works. The depart also says its online system will only accept 200 e-passports per day for now.

What is an E-Passport?

Also known as a biometric or electronic passport, an e-Passport comes embedded with an electronic chip that carries the same information which is printed on the passport itself but in digital form. the chip on it saves all the data of the individual so that they could be read by machines and help travelers for a comfortable procedure before they board their flight.

How Does An E-Passport Differ From MRP?

Most of the countries in the world implement MRPs. They bear information of the individuals on the ID page and it is scanned optically.

However, an electronic passport has a higher advantage with bio-metric data (fingerprints) and a chip containing the ID details of a person. Being digital it also comes with added securities which adds more value to it.

After receiving their e-Passport, travelers’ procedure would be hassle-free and improve their airport experience.

Also Read: COVID-19 Pandemic and Technological Impact

Which Countries Issue E-Passport?

Not all countries use electronic passports. But the number is increasing. Currently, there are around 120 countries including the US, UK, and Germany using e-Passport. As this type of passport brings more security and improves data reading at the airports to save time for the passengers more countries will be coming aboard soon.

E-passport is expected to elevate Nepalese’ international travel services. Do you expect it to provide the service as promised? Do leave your opinion in the comments below.

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