In an interview with Rahul Shivshankar and Navika Kumar of Times Now, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the power and the pride Indian passport has now, it was never in the past. He further added, there is a sense of Pride among Indians when they place their passport at the immigration centre.
It was in reply to a question asked by Navika Kumar. She asked, “Prime Minister, you have been trying to improve India’s image abroad, but some of our leaders go abroad and tell the Indian diaspora that things are not working well in India. They urge Indians abroad to return home because everything is getting worse. What will you say to those people?”
Prime Minister replied, “Maybe the people who live abroad and those people who keep travelling abroad, they will know the respect that the Indian passport carries today. I don’t think earlier anybody experienced the strength of the Indian passport. Today when people enter any airport and place their Indian passport at the immigration counter, there is a sense of pride. This is what everybody says. I believe this is the truth. But if we go out in the world and say something, it’s more about revealing the identity of the person than the country’s identity.”
India sliding score
Though Pride is subjective and can differ from person to person. But we can know strength/power of Indian passport.
As per Henley & Partners Passport Index released on January 9, 2018, India stands at 86 among 199 countries and regions when it comes to visa-free access or visa-on-arrival facility. Henley Passport Index is a global ranking of countries and territories according to the travel freedom that their citizens enjoy. The ranking is done in collaboration with the International Air Transport Association and is based on official data from their global database.
This and the past year index score is the worst performance of India since the ranking started in 2006. India’s ranking this year is on par with Cambodia and the Central African Republic. Till 2016, Indian passport gave more freedom to visit other countries and territories without Visa than China but now China’s passport ranks at 75, while India is at 86.
Indian passport allows citizens to visit 49 countries without the visa, while Chinese one to 60. India is at bottom three in Asia.
Which countries top the list?
German passport is strongest and gives access to 177 countries, while Singapore and Switzerland stand at 2nd giving freedom to visit 176 countries and territories.