Taranjeet posted the following comment at Name Mismatch between Passport, Markshteets and Certificates.

I am Taranjeet Singh. I just completed completed my dual degree(B.tech, M.Tech) from IIT Roorkee, with specialization in RF. I am considering to pursue Phd. But I have a problem with my name in the passport.

The thing is that I have used Taranjeet Singh as my name throughout my life. On all my school, college certificates Taranjeet Singh is listed as my name. However on my passport my name is “Taranjeet Singh Janjuha” as follows-

  • Given Name- Taranjeet Singh
  • Surname- Janjuha

This happened because on the passport form, there was a field which asked for surname. So, i wrote Janjuha thinking that they are asking it just for information purposes. I had no intent of using Janjuha in my passport name as I have never used it before. But anyways they included it in my name! Now I am stuck in a situation in which there is mismatch between my passport name and other certificates.

I think there would be a problem when I will give GRE and after that apply for US Visa. I would have to register for exam by my passport name and use the same name for all the VISA purposes. My college will send transcripts to US universities which will be by name of “Taranjeet Singh”. The concerned US university will also send I-20 or some other forms (although I don’t know which name they would use). Would this be a very big problem? Do you think that by registering for the exam an I-20 forms etc. by my passport name only, I would be able to avoid these problems?

Other solution is to change name on passport and include Singh as the surname and delete Janjuha from the name. So that my name on the passport is as follows-

  • Given Name- Taranjeet
  • Surname- Singh

This solution will solve all my name problems and let me give the exam. But the problem is I am not sure whethet it is possible for sikhs to include Singh/Kaur as surname
I have been told by one or two people who are settled in canada that sometimes Canada/US don,t allow use of Singh/Kaur as surname. I also talked to some passport agents and they confirmed this. However I am not very sure about this thing. Do you have any info on using Singh as surname for US etc.?

According to agents, it is possible to delete Janjuha from the surname and keep that field blank making my name on passport

  • Given name- Taranjeet Singh
  • Last name- Blank

Now I think this would be worst possible situation!! What solution would you suggest in order to solve my problem? I would greatly appreciate any help.

Indian Passport and Surname

You have possible options and you have listed them all. You should have read the

  1. Change your name in the passport (Best)
  2. Use the existing name and name differences in certificates will not be an issue. You can say in the application about the names used in certificate and you are ow going to use the name from passport going forward.
  3. Ridiculous to see someone say you cannot use certain names. You are free to use the name you wish.
  4. FNU is worst thing you can do. Make sure you read this article – Life in US with FNU and Blank First Name.

Getting new passport will delay you plans, but in long run it will make things easier for you. If you go with second option, you will be have to use Janjuha as Surname for rest of your life for all the documents (SSN, DL, Credit Cards, Visa, …). So, you have to decide if you like to go with Singh or Janjuha.

My suggestion is to change you name in passport and you can get to use the name that you have been using all your life. Do you guys agree with the suggestion?

  • K Raghu

    As with many south Indians, my son’s name is given as R Sxxxx, where ‘R’ is the initial which is the first letter of my name. In passport as they ask for expanding the initial, I had given it as Ryyyy Sxxxx under the given name. How do I correct it make Ryyyy as the surname/last name & Sxxxx as the first name. All school certificates are as R Sxxxx.

  • ranjit janda

    hi my name is ranjeet when i was studying my sbhool managment had made a mistake they put my name as ranjeet kumar and when i apply for passport i wrote my name ranjit singh janda now i am working in dubai from last 10 years but my problems started now when i apply for a canadian workpermit i am stuck now plz help me to solve this big problem

  • D.Anirudh bhatt

    hello …..here i have a small doubt m applying for passprt there they are asking first name + middle name that is given name and also surname…..in all my tenth,intermediate and b.tech certifcates my name is D.Anirudh Bhatt……and in my pan card it is Dharpally Anirudh Bhatt ….can any one pls tell wat should i have to fill in my passport?????.

  • bhum

    Adding to wht i mentioned below.. in th worst case if im unable to get ‘SINGH’ as my last name and give another ‘abc’ as my last name(which i have never used), will it again create problem as gre / toefl everythng is on name bhumika singh only….

  • bhum

    Hi HSB,

    Even Im in the same problem as Taranjeet Singh was… having bhumika Singh as given name and no last name. got I 20 from ASU and they have put last name as ‘BHUMIKA SINGH’.

    I have also dropped a mail to ISSO abt the difference in name in my passport and I 20, n if tht will create any problem fr me. (waiting fr there reply)

    Also, as every1 says tht getting name change doen in INDIA is easy, I’m planning to do so.getting last name is ‘SINGH’ , but as taranjeet told its actually a problem having ‘SINGH’ as last name. I just hope that they wil accept my application for name change….

    PS- I haven’t told ISSO tht i’m planning fr name change on passport and if they will provide me with new I 20 because of the above mentioned issue.

  • ravi teja

    hi my full name is munugapati ravi teja
    but in ssc it was given as munagapati raviteja…..
    there was one mistake in the letter….
    and in all certificates it was appeared as same like in ssc…
    but in my address proof (ration card) it was appeared as munugapati…
    so they have been rejected my passport…..so what should i do…[please help me….please

  • Pemaraj

    Hi my name on passport is Pemaraj and same in all certificates as well. I have no surname. While registering my application for MS in University of manitoba, they had asked for surname. Is blank surname an issue?

    On passport
    surname: Blank
    Given name: Pemaraj
    Last name : Balnk

  • Karthik S

    Dear Sir,
    My Name in all education documents is Karthik S. “S” is my initial. My father’s name is Srinivasa murthy. Now, I am planning to apply for a Indian Passport. I saw the application form and was confused with what to fill in sur name and given name. Please help. I think i have the following options. please advise, which would be the best/
    (i) Sur name as “Srinivasa Murthy” Given name as “Karthik”
    (ii) Sur name as “S” Given name as “Karthik”
    (iii) Surn name with blank Given name as “Karthik S”

    Just to remind, my educational documents carry name as Karthik S


    sir, my name is SUVEC.A.S.A..
    how should i fill in my passport application???????
    is it like this
    name- SUVEC

  • Venkatesan

    My passport has no surname and I had applied for Visa with Given name as FNU. I got my visa but, it has my given name and surname printed separately. there is no FNU in my visa stamp.
    It now looks like this
    Given Name: xx yy

    Given Name: FNU
    Surname: xx yy

    Given Name: xx
    Surname: yy

    Can somebody pls tell me if there would be a problem? and give any suggestions

  • sai


    I have the same problem. My whole name including first name and family name is under "Given name", and surname is blank. I have already given GRE and got a few admits. Can i change my name in passport now before going for visa interview?? Please advise.

    Thanks in advance,


  • kishor

    Hi ALL,

    My name in Passport kishor and surname poojary but middle name blank is this ok? and in my all mark card till my post gradutation my certificate has only first name ie "kishor" i changed my name while joing company then my name change

    to kishorpoojary, i may goto US for job purpose not for study. so let me know whether any problem il get when i apply for VIsa?

  • Sridhar

    Hey guys plz its urgent need your help

    My name is (not using my real name)

    Surname: Blank

    Given name: ABC(native place name) XYZ(father name) EFG(my name)

    all my documents in indiahave this name i duuno how suld i rite my name when i fil up for gre and for my visa ! im really scared because i have to book my dates on 26th october 2010 , changing my passport will take a long time and wont happen before 26th october

    plz help me guys plz




    hello my name is ahmed

    my name in certificates is : MOHAMMED MUZAMMIL AHMED

    my name in passport is:

    Surname: MOHAMMED

    Given name: MUZAMMIL AHMED

    my name in gre registration is:

    First name: MUZAMMIL AHMED

    Last name: MOHAMMED

    So, my passport and gre registration names are same but certificate name is different is this gonna be any problem for applying for MS in US to get i20 or visa

    please reply…………

  • s parvej

    hello everyone ! actually i also had problem with my name …. actually my name is

    s parvej in my school certificates …but it is written full as saif parvej in my passport as they did not accept abbrivated … will it cause any problem futher … i am going to kyrgystan for my futher studies please give me suggestions

  • Rahul

    Yes, Name in India is a big problem. First the passport application and instructions are scrap. In India mostly the name is written differently in different parts. I used to write my name as S M Rahul (Surname Middle-name Given-name). When I applied for passport long back the application had only NAME (with fully spelled). So I had written it as Surname Middle-name Given-name. And in the passport it came as

    Given Name : Rahul

    Surname : Surname Middle-name

    When I renewed the passport my name turned as :

    Given Name : Middle-name Rahul

    Surname : Surname

    When I asked the passport officials to change my Given Name as Rahul Middle-name they told me to fill another application for Change of name. i.e. we need to put 2 newspaper ad's for the name change. Infact the name is not changed but its misplaced as Indian passport doesn't have Middle Name. When the people in US reads it should be "Given Name then Middle Name", but in my case my name got changed to "Middle Name Given Name". At least Surname didn't change. And my middle name is my father's name, so I am called by my father's name wherever I go. And most of the time my name is not taken printed as the no. of characters are not sufficient.

    But till now I didn't face any issues in US, but I prefer people calling by name and everything comes properly with my name.

    Indian Govt. should see that Indian passport/application has Given Name, Middle Name and Surname(Lastname). This how it goes everywhere. Also this should be the format in all the certificates in India, so that people will not get confused and name is uniformly used all over the world.

  • rajbir singh

    is gre valid for mba(i.t) in usa????

  • vinay


    i am in a problem. i have name on my passport as Vinay Chavan.

    but few days when i booked GRE date he told me that your name on cerrtificate must match with name on passport.

    my name on certificates are


    but i have name on passport as Vinay chavan. on the last page of passport i have my dads and mothers name.

    what i did is i insisted him to book the gre test registration date with name

    Vinay ganeshsingh(firstname) Chavan(lastname).

    i am so confused what to do HSB pls helpme out

    one more thing by this same name i wrote GRE before i did not faced any difficulty at gre test center. i scored 1050. so i giving once more. am i suppose to change my passport name.

  • Taranjeet Singh

    Thanks HSB and HSB follower for the replies! I am going to get my name changed on passport…..the 2nd solution may have worked fine for some people, but you never know. I have talked to RPO chandigarh on the phone and atleast at the phone he said its O.K to put Singh in surname but we will see your documents first and then decide. I have talked to some of my Sikh friends in US universities and they also have been through this problem as their surname is blank with Singh included in the given name (Chd. Office didn't let them put Singh as surname!!!!). So lets see what happens in my case……it seems Singh is not as much of a king on passport as in real life!!

  • Rohil Bhatnagar

    Actually i have a very similar case at hand. Was planning to give GRE next month. But my passport came, with a name error!! My name on my certificates is Rohil S. Bhatnagar but since they dont accept abbreviated middle names, i wrote Rohil Sahai Bhatnagar. But when my passport came, my name was Rohil Bhatnagar Sahai! And i dont know now if to change my name, i have to apply for a new passport or the editing can be done on this one only! I need it early!

  • anubandh

    u can do 2 things-
    1. i dont know about US but Canadian embassy allows you to fix a phone appointment with them in which u can ask them whether u can use singh as a surname in their country or not, coz the rules are same in both the countries.
    2. go for a name change procedure in which u will be given a certificate that u have added janjuha as ur surname, so then whether u go to US, stay in India, or anywhere, u will have that certificate as a proof that u added janjuha to your name, coz may be US authorities may not mind any difference in school certificates and passport b ut in India or any other country they may object this.

  • Sukaran

    Hello HSB

    Well, I totally agree with your suggestions. I too had a similar problem with my name as I had a middle name in all my college/school documents but only the first and last name in the passport. Even if Taranjeet registers for GRE with the passport name i.e. 'Taranjeet Singh Janjuha' , he wont face any problem later on as majority of the Universities ask for 'Any previous names used' in their applications. Even if there is no option given in the application form, one can always contact the concerned person at that particular University (After my experience, I am pretty that its not a big problem at all). So, I dont think there would be any problem with the passport name except one, that the name on PhD would have an additional 'Janjuha'. If that is fine with Taranjeet then he wont face any hurdle in this aspect atleast!

  • chereddy kishore red

    sir ,i have the problem too in names provided in my certifcate and passport
    -i have (CH KISHORE REDDY) as name in study certificates
    -In passport i have(CHEREDDY(surname)KISHORE REDDY(firstname) which is actually correct.
    since there is only initial CH instead of surname(CHEREDDY) in study certificate will there be in problem.
    suppose if your option is to change name in study certificate with surname CHEREDDY included,then i have to change every certificate from 10th to B.tech,i dont know the procedure how to do it ,if u know please let me.


    HSB is right.Changing your name in the passport will make things alot better for you pal.it's won't take alot of time.try to meet the passport officer or the one whose signature & stamp bears on your passport.the passport guys are very efficient and fast,problem lies when our police[verification] involves the course.Do not get worried.make it a priority{JADA TIME NI LAGUU,BAKI HAUNSLA RAKH}.i can easily figure out what's going in your mind but changing name in the passport will be the best option from the rest.these GORAZ are very finicky when it comes to a slight contradiction in between your PASSPORT & OTHER ID's[THANKS to the amount of passport fraud that we asians do] .
    Regards to my dear HSB !!

  • AA

    use the second option………… i myself have done it and it works smoothly.. no worries…………

  • Abhishek

    I totally agree with what HSB has said. You should get another passport with singh as surname. This will make your life simpler in the future. So, better go with singh as surname.

  • Suneel Naik

    My suggestion is that you should go for name change in the passport which is the best option according to me. You can get your surname removed from the passport.

    Blank surname is not an issue at all in the passport document. I have my surname as blank in the passport and my full name includes my surname .

  • mana

    Actually this should not cause any problem. Think of this. All my life in India I used only initial instead of any surname (which is pretty common). But in my passport I had to give my dad's name as surname. ie my initial was replaced by my father's name as last name. So the certificates had my name with initial but passport had my name with surname. I just used name appeared in passport for GRE, TOEFL and university applications. I had no problem in getting admission and living in US.

    I guess my case is no different than the case discussed here. So ITS NO BIG DEAL. Universities know the fact that different countries have different naming systems. If you are still concerned you can send a letter along with your application to universities.