Pre approved Indian travelers to the U.S. who are classified as low-risk, could soon experience a fast and easy immigration check at select airports in the U.S. via automatic kiosks. India is slated to participate in the Global Entry Program initiative by the U.S. Homeland Security, prior to talks in July between the security agencies of U.S. and India to counter terrorism.
The dialogue will be held in Washington between the representatives of the two countries – Mr. Rajnath Singh, Home minister of India and Jeh Charles Johnson, U.S. Secretary – Homeland Security; who will sign an agreement on exchanging live data on terrorist screening between India and the U.S. A senior home minster commented that India might join the US Global Entry Program well ahead of Mr. Rajnath Singh’s intended visit in July.
The pact will see India cooperation on facilitating American customs’ initiative to protect its border and will facilitate business travellers, VIPs and high ranking officials who are serving the government and celebrities. Applicants, who seek membership in America’s global entry program, will be subjected to a thorough background check by both the Indian and US security agencies. However, final approval for inclusion of members will rest in the hands of the US security agencies. Approval will depend upon an applicant’s clean record, devoid of any serious criminal charges and economic defaults.
A senior official at the home ministry stated that the same program cannot be replicated for American travellers to India and that implementation would take time. He further added that India doesn’t have the facilities required to hasten immigration check at the moment, however the ministry will lunch a faster immigration program for previously validated citizens as sought by the US officials.
India is said to share its terrorist watch list with US Terrorist Screening Centre as a part of the Indo-US Homeland Security Dialogue. This joint effort will help the security and screening agencies to identify and track terrorist movements in India and America. India is among the 30 new entrants who have signed this cooperation agreement with the TSC who have agreed to share their terrorist watch lists which will contain information like name, nationality, photos, date of birth, passport number, and identified fingerprints of the terror suspects.
The agreement is said to prevent threats from ISIS, with many of India’s youth travelling to Iraq/Syria, where many of them have been prevented from entering the borders of such countries. A senior security official of India stated that India can effectively track IS-associated youth and their movements as a participating member of this agreement.
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