Given Name vs Surname (or Last Name) : Passport Applications in India

Raghuram Sukumar Application

Students applying for passport have some sort of confusion on how to fill Given Name and Surname Field in Indian passport applications. We have written few articles related to similar problem with  Blank Surname in Indian Passport.Question

Hello sir, thanks for all the information you keep giving us through your blog. i am in some trouble here sir. My first name is Sriram . My fathers name – Sampath. I have all my certificates with the name – S. Sriram. While applying for the passport, what do i fill in the name  columns with? Should the first name be Sriram Sampath or just Sriram?

Given Name vs Surname in Passport

Question 1 of  Indian passport application form 1

  • Name of applicant as it should appear in the Passport (Initials not allowed)
  • Surname and Given Name

In your case

  • Surname is Sampath
  • Given Name is Sriram

Always remember that Surname is name of your dad or family name. Not everyone use their Dad’s name as Surname, instead they have common family name which will be used as initial.  So, family name or dad’s name should be used as Surname in passport application.

  • Surname in India is equal to Last Name in USA

If you don’t have Surname in passport, you can still take GRE and get US Visa, but life in US will be real tough, from getting SSN, Drivers license, other documents, everything requires Last Name. You will have tough time to get all the names to match in all the documents.

If your Surname in Indian passport is blank and if you are planning to go to US or Study in US, you better add Surname in passport before applying for Visa or booking GRE Exam dates.

Some students apply for passport without Surname and end up facing lot of issue. It’s good to know that you are taking efforts to know the right way to fill the passport.

Certificate Name vs Passport Name

Since here in India we follow S. Sriram ( Initials and Name) type of naming instead if using Full Name ( Sriram Sampath) all the certificates and documents will have S. Sriram. There will no issues because of that. While submitting the application to Universities, there will be a field

  • Does documents have names different than above name?

There you can include S. Sriram and other names formats used in the documents you are submitting.

Update – I have posted a detailed article with examples of various name formats and possible solutions. Surname Problems: Passport vs Marksheets, Certificates and Documents

Raghuram SukumarGiven Name vs Surname (or Last Name) : Passport Applications in India