India has become the first country in the world to issue Biometric Seafarer Identity Document (BSID), capturing the facial bio-metric data of seafarers. Shri Mansukh Mandaviya, MoS (I/C) Shipping and Chemical & Fertilizers launched the project in New Delhi today. He also handed over the new BSID cards to five Indian seafarers.
The new facial biometric technology is a marked improvement over the two finger or iris based bio-metric data, with modern security features. It will make the identification of the SID holder more reliable and efficient, while protecting their dignity and privacy. India had made a presentation on this technology at ILO .
Speaking on the occasion Shri Mandaviya said that the country is moving ahead rapidly under the leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. The shipping sector is seeing major developments in the areas of coastal shipping, inland waterways and other maritime activities. This is leading to generation of employment in the sector, which is evident in the growing number of Indian seafarers in the international shipping industry. The total number of Indian seafarers who were employed on Indian or foreign flag vessels increased from 154349 in 2017 to 208799 this year, showing an unprecedented increase of 35%.
Mandaviya said that today's development is very significant against the backdrop of the increase in seafaring activities . The new document will give a fool proof identification to our seafarers which will facilitate their movement, provide ease of getting jobs and help in identifying them from any location in the world. The new card is in confirmation of the Convention No. 185 of the International Labour Organisation on BSID. India ratified the Convention in October 2015.
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