There is a lack of information on the molecular characterization of Ocimum species and hence, efforts have been made under the present study to characterize 17 Ocimum genotypes belonging to 5 different species ( O. basilicum, O. americanum, O. sanctum, O. gratissimum and O. Polystachyon) through random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) and inter simple sequence repeats (ISSR) markers. PCR amplification using 20 RAPD primers generated a total of 506 loci, of which 490 (96.47 %) loci were found polymorphic. The PIC value for RAPD ranged from 0.907 (OPF 14) to 0.954 (OPC 11) with an average of 0.937. The ISSR primers generated a total of 238 loci, of them 234 (98.17 %) loci were polymorphic. The PIC value ranged from 0.892 (UBC 808) to 0.943 (ISSR A12) with an average of 0.923. The average Jaccard’s similarity coefficient based on RAPD and ISSR analysis was 0.58 and 0.52, respectively. Clustering pattern of dendrogram generated using the pooled RAPD and ISSR data showed all Ocimum genotypes in their respective species groups at a cutoff value of 0.49 and 0.42, respectively. Many unique species-specific alleles were amplified by RAPD and ISSR markers. In both marker systems, a maximum number of unique alleles were observed in O. sanctum. The results of the present investigation provided valid guidelines for collection, conservation and characterization of Ocimum genetic resources.