|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
Going abroad? Won't need emigration clearance
September 06, 2007 17:33 IST
Last Updated: September 06, 2007 17:35 IST
There will be no requirement of emigration clearance from October 1 for Indians travelling abroad, with the government on Thursday admitting that the 'retrograde' scheme was a cause of 'harassment' and 'corruption'.
Making an announcement in this regard in the Lok Sabha, Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi said the scheme had been introduced with a 'good intention' to prevent misuse of visit visa for employment purposes but it has not achieved the objective.
The important emigration reform will be implemented from October 1, he said.
Under the Emigration Act 1983, a person holding a passport with 'Emigration Check Required' stamp is supposed to obtain emigration clearance from the protector of immigrants before leaving for overseas employment.
The Emigration Act does not cover ECR passport holders who travel overseas for visits other than for employment.
However, for the last two decades administrative instructions have been in force making it necessary for them to obtain Emigration Clearance Requirement Suspension, Ravi said.
"The ECRS system has no statutory basis," said the minister in a statement laid on the table of the House by him amid uproar created by the opposition NDA over the Indo-US nuclear deal.
"The ECRS system has led to considerable inconvenience and harassment to passengers. It has resulted in corruption in POE offices and a nexus between unscrupulous recruiting agents and middlemen resulting in the exploitation of a large number of poor people," Ravi said.