Home department is headed by a principal secretary. It is an interior ministry mainly responsible for the maintenance of internal security and domestic policy. For purposes of authentication of documents, the HRD ministry delegated the responsibility to the respective Home Departments of each state after 2005. HRD attestation process is mandatory for higher education purposes.
Home department attestation is a critical and initial step of certificate attestation. All the documents meant for attestation / apostille must be attested by the home department. Out of this 80% of the documents are attested by the Maharashtra Home Department. Otherwise known as Mantralaya. The main reason of this being that Mantralaya has been a point for attestation from the very beginning. The ease and acceptability of Mantralaya attestation at many embassies make it a popular choice. Earlier in the late 90s and early 2000s instead of Home Department attestation, HRD attestation from New Delhi was the norm.
Why Home Department attestation is needed?
In case of UAE and Oman; state Home Department Attestation is not necessary but in case of Saudi Arabia, it is compulsory where the HRD Ministry in New Delhi delegated this responsibility to the respective Home Departments of each state, an exception was made in the case of two states namely Kerala and Karnataka. In both these states the concerned Home Department created a special department called as Regional Authentication Centers or RAC. The RAC of Kerala is called as NORKA Roots.