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Provide biometric information to visit Canada

There will be some exemptions to the expansion of the Canadian biometric programme, including for those below 14 years of age or above 79.

world Updated: Dec 30, 2018 10:57 IST
biometric,canada,India
Starting on New Year’s Eve, most visitors from India travelling to Canada will be required to provide biometric information while applying for the relevant documents.(AFP)

Starting on New Year’s Eve, most visitors from India travelling to Canada will be required to provide biometric information while applying for the relevant documents.

These details will include fingerprints and photograph of the applicants. This will be necessary whether the applicant is seeking a visitor visa, study or work permit, or even applying for permanent residency of Canada. While the mandatory biometric requirements has already been implemented since July 31, this year, for applicants from countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the programme is now being expanded to encompass Asia, Asia-Pacific and the Americas. “Having biometrics makes it easier for immigration and border services officers to stop individuals who pose a risk to the safety and security of Canadians. It also helps officials verify travellers’ identities, makes processing applications easier and simplifies entry for legitimate travellers,” a statement from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada or IRCC noted. Obviously, applicants will have to be present in person to submit their biometrics and most will be collected prior to travelling at a visa application centre. IRCC also announced there will be “facilitative measures” for those making “repeat visits” to Canada. It said, “For example, those coming to visit, study or work temporarily will only need to give their biometrics once every 10 years.”

In a statement, Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, said, “Collecting biometrics from most foreign travellers coming to Canada makes sense on so many levels: it strengthens the integrity of our immigration system, while helping protect the safety and security of Canadians. Not only does biometrics collection give us a reliable, accurate tool to establish a traveller’s identity, but it also improves our ability to process applications and the entry of people upon arrival in Canada.”

There will be some exemptions to the expansion of the Canadian biometric programme, including for those below 14 years of age or above 79.

First Published: Dec 30, 2018 08:31 IST