India and the United States have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to expedite security clearances for Indian travellers entering the US, making travel to the US smoother for Indians.
''After joint scrutiny and clearance by both countries, the approved Indian travellers will be extended the facility of expedited entry into the United States through automatic kiosks at select airports,'' a press release said, adding, the formalities are expected to be completed in the coming months.
The MoU was signed between Indian ambassador to US, Arun K Singh and deputy commissioner of US Customs and Border Protection, Kevin K McAleenan.
India is the ninth country to enter into the International Expedited Traveller Initiative (also known as the Global Entry Programme) with the US. According to the reports, Global Entry Programme is currently available at more than 40 US airports and 12 pre-clearance locations. More than 1.8 million people are enrolled in Global Entry and approximately 50,000 new applications for the programme are filed every month.
Meanwhile, union home minister Rajnath Singh will be visiting the United States next month for the dialogue on homeland security. ''More investments are needed for the police modernisation programme. Rajnath Singh said, adding that homeland security is one of the important areas for the nation's economic development. ''If border management is proper, then only internal security is ensured'', he said.
There is a need to use technology for border management, he added.
The red-tapism and governmental procedures were minimized to attract FDIs. Earlier the government used to sanction security clearance for only 3 years and now the same has been extended to 10 years, he said.