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Indian passport ranking 2016

The world’s most powerful passports are ranked according to a ‘visa-free score’ (VFS). This means the number of times a citizen can travel abroad without a visa.

The Passport Index is an online tool that collects data about passports from around the world. Once a year, it ranks the passports based on their visa free score (VFS).

(Read more: Indian passport ranking 2017)

Understanding the visa-free score (VFS)

The VFS is a count of the number of countries a passport holder can travel to visa-free or where they can get a visa on arrival.

The Indian passport 2016, attained a visa-free score of 46. Based on this, the Indian passport ranked 78 in the global rankings. That same year, Germany topped the rankings with a score of 157 while Pakistan ranked 94th. Afghanistan’s was the least powerful passport with a VFS of just 23.

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How the Indian passport performs

Indians still face some issues when travelling to their favourite travel spots overseas. Singapore, Malaysia, and the United Arab Emirates are popular destinations for Indian travellers. But Indians require visas to travel there.

In general, India has seen its ranking decline in recent years. The Indian passport’s best showing was in 2006, when it took the 71st place. Its worst performance came in 2015, when its rank slipped to 87.

Passports are also judged by how far passport holders from other countries are allowed to travel visa-free, get a visa on arrival, or get Electronic Travel Authorization. India ranks 23rd in that regard. The country eases visa requirements for 145 countries.

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Surge in demand for Indian passports

India is the third largest passport-issuing country in the world after China and the USA. The number of passports issued grew to 1.2 crore in 2015, up from 60 lakh passports just five years earlier.

The introduction of online passport application has contributed to this surge. It has made the application process simpler and more efficient.

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