As per a government directive, hand-written passports will not be valid from Thursday. The government had asked those in possession of hand-written passports to get machine-readable ones with bar codes by November 24.
Hand-written passports were issued prior to 2001.
The government had decided to discontinue with hand-written passports in accordance with recommendations of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to incorporate biometric data in the machine readable travel documents.
“Hand-written passports have become invalid from today. Machine-readable passports have greater protection against fraudulent practices and tampering,” said a government official.