Passport Seva Kendras to be Introduced!

With the Passport Seva Kendras (PSK) being opened across the nation with 77 centers within a year, no more standing in the queues for all the applicants! The first of the many would be launched in Bangalore. This would be followed by six more PSKs in June. The first one in Bangalore would function as a pilot project for a period of 3 months. Post this; more of these kiosks would be introduced in the rest of the nation.

According to the Joint Secretary for the Counselor Passports and Visas of MEA, A. Manickam, in the coming three months, 7 such kiosks would be operating and my March 2011; all the planned seventy seven PSKs would open.

Off the above pre-planned seventy seven kiosks, the cities of Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai would have three kiosks where as the Kolkata would have two. With the new system in place, the applicants could obtain their passport after three days after the police verification is done.

An applicant would not take more than forty five minutes after entering the kiosk to file his application. Inside the PSK, the details would be filed by the data operator and the applicant would be photographed there and then. This would be followed by the verification of the documents and then sent to the Granting Officer. He would then take a decision on whether to accept or reject the application. This entire procedure would be carried out within forty five minutes.

Post approval, it would then be sent to the District Police Headquarters for further verification. Here, the present system of verification would also be changed. So, the police would not be under any rights to say that the application is not present with them. The police would be equally answerable.

From 1997 to 2007, the number of passports that were issued has gone up by 2.2 times. This is expected to further increase as India is catching up with the global scenario. By 2011, the demand for a passport would be almost reaching one crore. This clearly projects a raise by another 18% annually.

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